The COVID-19 pandemic pushed the entire world into an era of increased health importance. Health practices transformed drastically in the past two years, with social distancing and digitization becoming the new norm. Also, people have become much more aware of the benefits of good health practices to stay safe from diseases.
For organizations, ensuring employee health and wellbeing became highly crucial during the pandemic.
Remote working and social isolation caused several health problems among employees, such as depression, anxiety, weight gain, and so on. With increasing physical and mental health issues among employees, employers had little to no option but to introduce wellness programs and initiatives to avoid losses in productivity and output.
Resumption of work in offices also posed a threat for employers and their employees' health. To ensure employee health and safety at work, it became even more important to focus on workplace wellness practices.
Thus, employee wellbeing became the topic of the moment. And as a result, more and more companies started implementing wellness programs to address the importance of healthy living at work.
We at Vantage Circle also used the opportunity amidst the pandemic to introduce a month-long Virtual Walkathon using our simplified & AI-enabled wellness platform, Vantage Fit. The Global Corporate Virtual Walkathon, as we called it, helped us immensely to inspire organizations to prioritize wellness.
Companies worldwide were allowed to engage their employees in a virtual walkathon contest with exciting prizes for grabs. The event, which witnessed the participation of more than 3700 employees from 74 different teams, enabled companies to incorporate a healthy and active lifestyle among their workforces.
Key trends that are emerging in 2021
Well, as we know, 2020 was a rollercoaster ride for everyone. With COVID-19 affecting people worldwide, things became uncertain. Organizations were forced to operate remotely, and work-from-home culture became more prominent than it ever was.
Work-from-home became a boon and a curse for organizations. While it allowed business operations to keep running, it affected employee health significantly. Weight gain and other health problems became prevalent among people working from home.
Moreover, with many people struggling with depression and stress due to the pandemic, mental health also took quite a hit.
Despite how turbulent the last year was, there is still an opportunity to start afresh. With 2021 demanding us all to prioritize our health first, we need to make the right choices to stay healthy and fit.
With the spotlight shining on wellness recently, quite a few trends have come up.
- For instance, the concept of micro-goals has become quite popular. The pandemic has made us realize that the world can throw a wrench in our gears at any moment. And we must be ready when it does. So being open and flexible to realistic wellness goals is essential. Organizations offering their workforce various wellness options to choose from will bring new changes into the employee wellbeing spectrum. Selecting from a long list of micro-goals instead of one big resolution can benefit overall wellness.
- Also, with social distancing being in vogue, our lives have become increasingly digital. Meeting in person is not considered safe anymore. Therefore, fitness classes, meditation sessions, and even therapy sessions are now held online.
- Then there is Telehealth, the use of telecommunication technologies to provide health services over long distances remotely. Such healthcare provisions happening over a virtual platform offer expanding access to care and decrease disease exposure to workers and patients. When employers enable telehealth services for their employees, they can enjoy access to wellness services whenever and wherever required.
Multiple other trends are emerging in 2021, and it will be a year where we regain whatever is lost and find alternate ways towards new wellness experiences.
In this context, Vantage Circle has managed to ascertain that employees working from home can still lead a healthy lifestyle.
Through our comprehensive wellness platform, Vantage Fit, we have provided many features to keep employee health in check. We have ensured employers leave no stone unturned in making their employees healthier, from creating fitness challenges and contests to giving out incentives for achieving targets.
Vantage Fit provides many features for employers to help them have a seamless employee wellbeing experience.
Employers get access to an advanced HR dashboard to monitor employee engagement in wellness programs. An activity tracker allows employees to track many kinds of fitness activities like yoga, swimming, and more. Also, users can synchronize their wearable devices with the Vantage Fit app for a more personalized experience.
Employees can even track daily step count and nutrition with Vantage Fit. Other features include a Mood-o-meter to track mood and an accurate heart rate monitor, among many.
With such features, engaging employees in wellness programs becomes very easy for our clients in times like these.
Strides in HealthTech that can enable organizations to put employee wellbeing at the center stage of employee experience
The rising importance of health and safety during the pandemic accelerated innovations in the world of health technology. Newer and more advanced technologies are transforming the way people monitor health and wellbeing.
- One of the significant strides in health tech is advanced wearable technology. Smart wearable devices are revolutionizing the way people track their health regularly. Everything from heart rate to blood oxygen levels can be tracked by such devices, allowing people to be more aware of their bodily functions. Many organizations are already incorporating wearable technology in their wellness programs to provide their employees a seamless wellness experience.
- Then there is AI or Artificial Intelligence. The potential of AI in wellness programs is immense. It can transform employee wellness through personalization based on employees' preferences and enhance the overall user experience. It can also improve the effectiveness of employee feedback collection and help employers implement changes to improve their wellness initiatives.
The advancements in health technology are enabling organizations to take a holistic approach towards employee wellbeing. Forward-thinking employers are increasingly relying on technology to ensure a robust and seamless employee wellness experience.
Role of Technology in ensuring employee wellness in the future
Employee wellness is transforming as we speak. Health practices are changing, causing organizations to create new solutions and take innovative approaches to wellbeing accordingly.
Moreover, with technology advancing so rapidly, numerous innovations are being made in the field of wellness. The potential for technology coupled with employee wellness solutions is endless.
For instance, digital wellbeing platforms and software have made implementing wellness programs a cakewalk for organizations. They allow organizations to deal with employee health more effectively through advanced reports and analytics. They also make it easier to promote awareness on health topics and engage employees in wellness activities.
Nowadays, employers can gain a better understanding of their employees' health conditions using predictive health analytics. This way, they can take appropriate measures and reduce healthcare costs in the long run. Again, one more instance where technology has played a big role.
Wellbeing technology has opened up more doorways for employers to create holistic wellbeing strategies geared towards the future of work and remote working culture.
And for these reasons, it is being implemented more extensively throughout organizations worldwide.
Overall, the convergence of technology and employee wellness provides a massive opportunity for organizations to encourage healthier lifestyles in their workplaces and beyond. And in days to come, we will see more and more employers emphasizing wellness in their workplaces by leveraging technology.
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