Health, wellness and feeling good is an important component of a happy workplace. That said, many business owners know they should have a wellness initiative in place to better serve their employees and their business.
But did you know that you could be just one perk away from creating a better work-life balance, work productivity and employee happiness? And no, we aren’t talking about the subsidized gym membership or healthy snacks in the breakroom (though those are great!).
We’re talking wearable devices.
Wearable tech is all the rage, and for good reason. Wearables can gamify the wellness experience, making it exciting to get up and move, meet goals, compete against others and get and stay healthy. People love having the ability to measure their progress toward their health and fitness goals. And for the savvy employer, advanced wearables can even provide a way to aggregate anonymous data and compare it to what’s happening in your business.
But perhaps the greatest reason you should utilize wearables for both you and your employees is this: Wearables (fitness devices in particular) can increase the coveted work-life balance by giving employees a way to manage their health no matter where they are. In fact, a PwC report found that health was the number one motivator for people to wear things like smartwatches, fitness trackers and other wearable technology. A majority of people are excited about wearing devices–and 37% of people expect that their employers will adopt the latest technology to improve the workplace.
Need more convincing that workplace wearables are the way to go? Here are 7 benefits that wearable technology can provide to you and your team!
Monitor stress levels to reduce healthcare costs
Stress and elevated heart rates go hand in hand–as do high healthcare costs. By outfitting your team with devices that track their heart rates, you and they can ensure that no one is left feeling overwhelmed. Many devices come with reminders to breathe and relax, which can give everyone some intentional space in their workday to focus on calming down and breathing deep.
Attract new talent
Millennials care about their health–and tracking and logging everything that matters to them. It’s one reason why social media is such a hit. By including wearable devices as part of your company benefits and perks, you’ll be speaking the language of the people who will soon make up the largest portion of the workforce–and may attract top talent who also care about their health.
Incentivize employees to be healthy
Tracking metrics and progress can help employees feel more engaged in achieving health goals–and healthy employees are more productive employees. While most people are motivated by their health when they purchase wearables, 80% of people said money, loyalty points or some reward would encourage them to don wearables regularly. Launching challenges that individuals can “cash in” for points, time off, donations to charity or more can be a great incentive to keep them (and productivity) strong.
Complement work-life balance
A majority of Americans are unhappy at their workplace due to poor work-life balance. The workday happens during what, for many people, are the most productive hours of their day. This can make it difficult to hit the gym after work or go for a run or ride. Add kids into the equation, and many of your employees are likely running around strapped for time. By introducing a way for them to focus on their health and track their progress, you’ll minimize the pressure to do it all outside of work and enable them to carve out time to track small moments (and meet wellness goals) in their day.
Track productivity and absenteeism
If you invest in advanced trackers, you can glean valuable data (make sure to ensure your employees all data is anonymous) that can provide a wealth of information on how your team is doing. You’ll be able to track absenteeism/sick days as well as how productivity levels are increasing due to your workplace wellness initiative. And that will only encourage you to keep encouraging your team to use their wearables, take part in challenges and achieve their goals.
Increase productivity and efficiency
Forty-nine percent of people say wearables can increase their efficiency in the workplace. A study by Rackspace revealed that employees who wore wearables at work saw productivity increase by 8.5%. Dr. Martha Menard, a Charleston, South Carolina-based behavioral health scientist, author, and researcher, said, “Productivity is complex: there’s absenteeism, presenteeism (being physically present on the job but being mentally distracted), and the effects of employee turnover. Wellness programs help increase productivity by reducing absenteeism, presenteeism, and by retaining employees… A good wellness program can help employees get and stay healthier physically and emotionally… It encourages employee engagement and loyalty… Bottom line–healthy and happy employees are more productive employees.”
Improve employee retention
Health and happiness are major factors in the workplace–and the lack of one or both can quickly lead to greater turnover (and frustration for you). Employees who use wearable devices are 3.5% more satisfied with their jobs. Encouraging employees to intentionally care for their health can increase their happiness levels both on and off the job–and keep your company moving forward.
So whether you purchase a wearable device for everyone on your team, provide a subsidy toward the purchase of a device or get on the trending BYOD bandwagon, you and your team can reap the benefits of greater connectivity. What are you waiting for?