Corporate Wellness Technology

Corporate Wellness Technology

Employees across the globe are burning out, indulging in unhealthy habits, getting stressed, and are losing sleep over workplace pressure and completing their jobs. Sadly, their efforts to improve organizational productivity are reflecting on poor health, leading to higher healthcare costs for their companies. Amusingly, employers are looking towards wellness technology to help with the employee health and wellness concerns, and for overall better ROI.

Technology is advancing in every field across the globe, and all businesses and individuals need to be aware and adapt to the changes to stay on par with the emerging trends. And with the corporate wellness market blooming, the vendors and employers need to make the right wellness technology choices for effective and productive outcomes.

A Forbes study revealed that almost 80% of the businesses are offering some form of employee wellness programs, and so there is a lot of scope for employers to choose the ones that not only suit their workforce's wellness requirements, but also fit their budget and company policies well. With so many employee wellness platforms, wellbeing programs, fitness devices, tracking apps, and more - the corporate wellness technology is flourishing currently like never before.

So, What Exactly Does Wellness Technology Mean?

Simply put, corporate wellness technology is the automation mechanics and technical knowledge put together to help organizations deal and manage employee health and wellness efficiently. More often, wellbeing technology makes use of wellness platforms built using the latest wellness programming and software that essentially offers flexibility and scalability to the wellness programs.

The wellness programming, software, and technology aid in designing suitable wellness programs that can help identify and manage health and wellness risks of the workforce. Not just health and wellness, a well-designed employee wellness program boosts employee engagement, workplace wellness, and motivates the workforce with fitting wellness challenges, incentives, and other wellness modules.

Apart from creating, executing, and managing the entire employee wellness program, using the right wellness technology will also help in evaluating its ROI, VOI, and the overall impact of the wellbeing program on the business.

Wellness Technology - is indeed a broad term that sums up for all the technical components used - wellness software, tools, modules, and the systems. Technically, in the corporate wellness industry, these systems are more specifically referred to by a few terms like –

  1. Wellness Platforms
  2. Wellness Portals
  3. Wellness Software
  4. Wellness Programming
  5. Employee Engagement Strategies
  6. Health Management Systems
  7. Digital Health Solutions
  8. Wellness Management Solutions

Many other terms in regard to wellness technology and workplace wellness, employee wellness, corporate wellness, employee engagement, and employee health, is usually used interchangeably.

Wellness technology could either be -

  1. A single module, software, or components like Health Assessments, Wellness challenges, etc.
  2. A comprehensive all-in-one wellness platform

The effectiveness of the outcomes simply depend on knowing what kind of wellness technology you need to meet your company’s health and wellness needs, and how well you are executing them.

Why Use Employee Wellbeing Technology?

Employee wellness programs are quite complicated to run and manage. Irrespective of being an employer who is offering wellness programs to employees, or a wellness vendor who designs and manages the entire program - there is a lot to do throughout the administration and smooth functioning.

These employee wellbeing come with multiple modules that need efficient execution, tracking, and evaluation to understand the progress and ROI. Also, the different modules like assessments, reports, coaching, data integration, device tracking, online resources, and incentives - all need wellness technology at every point. And with the emerging trends and employee wellness demands, the platforms should be scalable and flexible to get upgraded with the advancing wellness technology.

With the latest technology embedded in your wellness initiatives and digital solutions, you can manage the administrative tasks, and time efficiently, use your resources for better planning and implementation of other employee engagement strategies, and give a competitive edge to your competitors in the industry.

Who Uses Wellness Software and Technology?

In short, any organization or individual who incorporates health and wellness in their lives, uses or can use corporate wellness technology in different forms. The typical organizations that use wellness software and programming are –

  1. Corporate Wellness Vendors -Also known as wellness providers, wellness companies, or wellness resellers, these organizations design tailor-made wellness platforms that help in executing and managing the health and wellness programs for their clients. Using the right wellness technology enables them to extend their services efficiently to their customers and evaluate their progress.
  2. Corporate Employers -Although in-house wellness programs may not give desired outcomes, in the long run, many employers work with wellness vendors or resellers who provide customized wellness programs. Irrespective of the company size, employers take support from the wellness providers and their technical services to manage and administer their employee wellness programs.
  3. Health Coaches and Coaching Companies -Health coaching is an important part of the employee wellness programs, and using wellness technology to offer health coaching modules boosts the efficiency of the program. Most wellness programs offer online communication through their wellness platforms or coaching portals, wherein employees can interact with the health coaches, get recommendations, and discuss their progress. In addition to health coaches, many employers are also offering online educational resources, like SelfHelpWorks offered by Wellness360 through our wellness platforms.
  4. Insurers and Benefits Brokers -Insurers are extending their services towards corporate wellness from just offering healthcare insurance plans. More like value-added services, insurers who offer wellness programs and technology to their clients seem to have an advantage with their customers. Similarly, benefits brokers who help individuals and organizations with retirement funds and health insurance plans have a competitive edge with their clients by offering effective employee wellness programs and managing it for them.
  5. Employee Assistance Program (EAP) Providers -EAP Providers offer different programs and services that support employee health and wellness initiatives taken up by corporate organizations. Right from dealing with counseling, job performance, and overall health and wellness factors, EAP providers use wellness technology throughout their wellness program infrastructure to develop and deliver their services.

What Support Should Your Employee Wellness Technology Offer?

Gone are those times when companies built their own software to meet their requirements. Also, health and wellness is a changing trend, and it could be difficult at a certain time for the in-house wellness technology to meet emerging demands. Eventually, you might end up spending more on these resources than the amounts you were trying to curb with healthcare costs. That is why most companies leave the wellness technology, programming, and execution part to the vendors, who are more accustomed to handling these tasks.

To make sure you are choosing the right corporate wellness technology for your employee wellness programs, you need to consider a couple of aspects and features that your wellness platform, software, or the wellness management systems can support. Also, since it has to be reliable and effective over a long period of time, check the flexibility and scalability factors too.

White-labeling and Branding Capabilities

Establishing your brand with your wellness program is one of the effective employee engagement strategies. It not only gives a personalized touch to your employees about their workplace, but also help in setting your company as a pro-employee venture. While choosing the wellness vendor, make sure they provide the wellness technology that allows the creation of flexible and scalable white label wellness platforms and programs that are unique to your workplace branding features, including your logo, colors, and more.

Wellness Challenges

Wellness challenges and activities are an integral and vital part of almost all the employee wellness programs. Apart from being one of the effective employee engagement strategies, wellness challenges also help in building long-term behavior modification changes. Wellness360 offers wellness challenges that focus on achieving holistic wellness, and our wellness platforms support all the required needs.

Apart from having enough wellness challenges templates to support individual and team activities, make sure your corporate wellness technology also drives employee engagement by supporting modules like -

  1. Gamification
  2. Data Integration
  3. Activity Tracking
  4. Rewards and Incentives
  5. Personalization

Communication Hub

Communication between the employees and employers throughout the wellness program, or otherwise is crucial. It not only boosts employee engagement rates, but also improves the trust factor and loyalty of the workforce towards their employers. Your wellness platform should incorporate wellness technology that allows easy communication and interaction between the administrators and participants. Apart from regular communication, it is important to interact through multiple modes to ensure the message reaches all the employees on time.

  1. Notifications - To notify employees about the wellness program, registration, or any upcoming events. It can either be via emails or as announcements on the wellness platform.
  2. Push Notifications - Your wellness programming can be set to send push notifications to the employees on the platform, emails, or any place they are available the most. Be it a health coach appointment or a reminder to register for an upcoming event, this communication mode is widely preferred.
  3. Announcements -Typically displayed on the dashboard of the user wellness platform, announcements are a great way of communicating with the employees about any forthcoming events, challenges, or activities.
  4. Social Networking -Be it in the workplace internal messenger or on the social media handles of the employees, social networking is an efficient wellness technology to communicate with the employees.

Health Assessments and Screenings

Health Risk Assessments (HRA) and Biometric Screenings are crucial onboarding activities of a well-planned employee wellness program. They help in identifying potential health risks at an early stage, allowing effective designing of the wellness program modules accordingly and reduce healthcare costs considerably. Wellness platforms must be built with tools that allow

  1. The administrators to create assessment questionnaires
  2. The administrators to schedule screenings
  3. The users to give their input for the health risk assessments
  4. The users to schedule screening appointments
  5. The administrators to send reminders via email notifications, announcements, or push notifications to the users about the impending assessments or upcoming screenings.

Apart from allowing and reminding the users to take the assessments and screenings, the wellness programming should also allow logging, storing, and editing the biometrics data, including - height, weight, BMI, activity log, sleep minutes, blood pressure, blood glucose levels, and more. Also, the corporate wellness technology used for the wellness portal should support third-party integration of files and reports from the screening vendors, health coaches, and other file-feeds relevant to employee health and wellness.

Health Coaching Modules

Health and wellness coaching has become a vital part of modern corporate wellness programs. Ideally, health coaching modules involve health coach professionals who help the employees to set realistic goals, plan their wellness journey, and guide them through it. The health coaching can either be done in-person or virtually.

With the right wellness technology, health coaching can be an effective employee engagement strategy and efficiently improve employee health and wellness. Typically, health coaches are assigned with independent wellness portals through which they can -

  1. Schedule appointments
  2. Interact with the employees
  3. Hold discussions
  4. Review reports
  5. Track the outcomes

Online Educational Resources

Education is a key component of all health and wellness programs. When the employees are well informed and educated about the underlying health risks and how to manage them, they can make better decisions to bring positive changes. The online educational resources are ideally self-directed that can be accessed on the wellness platform. Your corporate wellness technology must support and deliver all the health and wellness educational resources in various forms, including -

  1. Online resources -Third-party educational resources can be of great help. You can collaborate with vendors who provide online educational resources through videos, articles, or other media-based modes, integrate your wellness platform with their resources, and make it easily accessible to the employees from their user portals. Wellness360 offers online resources from SelfHelpWorks, through which, employees can choose the specific online course relevant to their health and wellness needs, and sign up for it.
  2. In-House Content -In addition to the third-party online resources, many employers also offer in-house health and wellness content, specifically created to meet the unique demands and requirements of the workforce. Talk to the wellness vendor and create flexible and scalable in-house content using the latest wellness technology.

Rewards and Incentives

Wellness incentive programs have been proven to be successful employee engagement strategies. Apart from motivating the employees to participate, engage, and reach their wellness goals, offering the right incentives will also be of significant financial help in many ways. However, for the incentive programs to be successful, they need to be devised with the right set of tools and wellness technology, through which employees can earn rewards, track, and redeem them. The administrators can choose to set the reward campaigns by considering various factors, like –

  1. Activity-based or outcome-based
  2. Maximum redemption points
  3. e-Gift cards
  4. Merchandise offers
  5. HSA Contributions
  6. Premium discounts

Reporting Analytics and Metrics

Reporting, analytics, and metrics help in assessing the progress of the entire employee wellness program. They are a crucial element of the applied corporate wellness technology to understand how the employees are performing, the engagement rates, compare estimated and resultant outcomes, and complete data segregation based on various aspects. Be it the data from third-party vendors, device integration reports, individual or aggregate user reports, performance measures, ROI, and overall administrative dashboard reports - make sure your wellness platform is equipped with the right wellness technology to provide all the reports and metrics you need to assess and analyze the wellness program.

Evaluating ROI and VOI

Using the right metrics with advanced wellness technology is crucial to analyze your wellness program. Ideally, ROI, VOI, or a combination of both the counts is used to measure your wellness technology and the overall wellness program outcomes. To start with, most employers may prefer using VOI as the choice of measuring outcomes, and as the program grows with additional modules, you can switch to ROI or both.

ROI helps you measure - time resources, user experience, service limitations, program shortcomings, scalability, hard costs, and other factors that are usually considered pain points of the program. VOI measures - employee engagement, workplace culture, burnout, and other factors affecting the running of the business. Choose what you need to evaluate and analyze, and use relevant corporate wellness technology and its elements to measure the ROI, VOI, or both.

Third-party Integrations

The corporate wellness market is steadily growing, and new inventions are blooming in the market constantly. Be it the new fitness devices or wellness apps for device and app integration, the Application Programming Interface (API’s), or single-sign-on (SSO), an advanced wellness platform must be flexible enough to accommodate the latest corporate wellness technology that supports the emerging trends. It is about making it easy for the employees to engage, participate, log their details, track, and monitor the progress.

Privacy and Security

Wellness platforms manage all the health, personal, and confidential data that need to be handled and managed with utmost privacy and security. However, despite taking care, there are high chances of risks and vulnerabilities due to - network issues, insecure servers, portal logins, third-party integrations, internal breaches, or external attachments. HIPAA or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act sets the regulations to protect the privacy of the users in the USA, and it is mandatory that your wellness technology is compliant with the HIPAA regulations and employee privacy laws.

There is a lot more that you should consider while choosing your corporate wellness technology to build your wellness program and the portal. Be it the implementation or post-execution factors, evaluation costs, technical support, program support manager, or identifying the overall wellness program objectives - researching well and choosing the best-fitting modules from the plenty of wellness technology options is the key to designing, creating, executing, managing, and running the entire employee wellness program to achieve the desired business, and employee health and wellness outcomes.