How to Introduce Digital Health to Your Organization
February 19, 2021 / Corporate Wellness
Prior to 2020, getting your entire organization, from baby boomers to Gen Z, to fully embrace technology in the workplace seemed nearly impossible. But as COVID-19 led to a shutdown of offices and public spaces, workers were forced to adopt digital tools like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack and various share drives – from Google to Sharepoint to Dropbox – to complete their work and stay connected.
As we head into 2021, employees are more digitally savvy than ever and increasingly comfortable using technology to improve their health and wellbeing. In fact, more than 12 million individuals last year used Virgin Pulse to support their wellbeing – from building new healthy habits to curb the spread of COVID-19, to improving physical fitness, to reducing stress and building resilience, to managing nutrition to engaging with a certified health coach. Members are also utilizing the program to stay connected to their colleagues through healthy challenges as we all adapt to new ways of working. Given lockdowns and restrictions on in-person doctor visits, many people are experiencing telehealth for the first time – and finding it to be a viable – and convenient alternative to in-office visits. Many doctors and mental health services are shifting to televisits. Stress reduction apps like Whil and tobacco cessation tools like Truth Initiative’s EX Program are also seeing increased utilization. Telenutrition apps like Foodsmart are proving valuable for addressing food insecurity.
If there was ever a time to introduce a digital health and wellbeing platform to your organization, it’s now. Not only are your people ready and willing to learn how to utilize new tools, but employees need support in maintaining their physical, mental, social, financial and family health more than ever before.
These 3 steps can help your organization successfully introduce a robust digital health platform:
Educate your workforce on the value of wellbeing.
We’ve learned this year that employees look to their employers as the most trusted source of information about COVID-19, so why not harness that trust to educate and engage them in a digital wellbeing program? Leverage the digital platforms that your remote and on-site workforce are already comfortable using to introduce new wellbeing initiatives to your organization. Whether it’s through email, an online messaging platform or video conferencing, employers can initiate conversations around wellness, stressing the importance of healthy habits to stay safe during the ongoing pandemic and getting a feel for what the kinds of support your people need to improve their health outcomes.
Choose the approach that best matches your organization’s needs.
Is your organization struggling with maintaining employee engagement? Are your employees at risk of developing or living with costly chronic conditions? Are your employees getting critical medical care for their existing conditions? Are employees using the benefits you’re providing for preventative and routine care? Do your people need additional one-on-one support to achieve their personal wellbeing goals? Understanding your employee demographics and current gaps in care, especially when it comes to the management of chronic conditions, is essential to selecting the right solution that can meet the diverse and unique needs of each member of your workforce.
Depending on the dynamics of your organization, your digital health solution can include:
- A culture-boosting organization-wide virtual wellbeing challenge component
- Workplace health and safety screening tools to protect your onsite workforce from COVID-19
- Lifestyle and Condition Health coaching and live services
- Integrated partner solutions to provide additional support in areas like financial wellbeing, family planning, nutrition, mindfulness, physical activity, musculoskeletal health and tobacco cessation
- Digital therapeutics to empower employees to manage or prevent the onset of chronic conditions like type 2 diabetes and weight management
Bring it all together in one connected, easy-to-navigate place.
With varying ages, cultural backgrounds, gender and racial identities, comfort levels with digital tools and healthcare needs, simplicity and personalization are key to getting your entire workforce to participate in a digital workplace wellbeing program. AI-based recommendations, friendly nudges and personally relevant content make it easy for each employee to identify and make progress towards their wellbeing goals.
From employees looking for simple healthy habits and peer engagement to those members of your workforce who need additional support with managing chronic conditions and comprehending their benefits, it’s all seamlessly interwoven in one platform. By unifying the systems that address the wide range of wellbeing needs within your workforce, you’ll make it easier for your people—and your organization—to understand and navigate their ever-evolving health journey.
Now is the time for your organization to invest in digital health. Your people are ready, and your business needs a healthy, resilient workforce in order to succeed. Remind your employees that they don’t need to be tech experts to participate in a virtually-based wellbeing program – they’ve already got the skills they need to take on a new workplace tool.