Unless you’ve been living under a rock, it’s safe to say you’ve probably heard of wearables. From Garmin to Fitbit, most of us have some sort of first-hand experience with those nifty new devices that have flooded the market.
In fact, wearables are a huge deal, and are not going away any time soon. According to a new market research report, the wearables market will be worth nearly $63 billion by 2025!
We know that wearables are very attractive on a personal level, but that’s not all - they can also benefit businesses.
1. Get more productive employees
Studies have shown that wearable devices can be great facilitators and motivators for personal wellbeing. People (and in some cases, employers) can use these devices to evaluate their lifestyle choices and keep chronic illnesses in check through the data collected by them, as well as utilise the functions that alert when something is wrong.
But employee wellbeing is not only important because you truly care for your team, although that’s definitely a big factor - it also means your people would be working better and become more productive. In fact, employees with healthy habits were found to be 25% more productive than their less-healthy colleagues, which means that wearables can actually increase your business’s productivity and by that, increase your profit.
2. Reduce sick days
Sickness costs the UK economy more than £77 billion per year. That’s an enormous number which can be decreased with a better lifestyle - that’s why so many employers today opt for wellbeing initiatives.
Wearables help people make better choices, which in turn reduces the risk of illness. This means less absenteeism, less presenteeism, less doctor’s visits and better performance at work.
3. Help employees get away from their desks
Movement is one of the most important parts of our health, but our modern lifestyles are generally quite sedentary. We sit at a desk between 9-5 and then go home to watch Netflix lying down - not much movement involved!
With some wearables, they can access their calls, emails, messages and calendars without carrying any cumbersome devices. They can check for directions, listen to music, or track their steps and activity whilst on a walking meeting or just taking a much-needed break.
The built-in reminders in those wearables are also helpful in notifying your team when they’ve been sedentary for too long, increasing the chances of them actually taking a 5-minute break to clear their heads and get a few steps in.
Take the Garmin Venu, for example. It can track activity (including swimming - it’s completely waterproof), set daily goals and help tackle sleep problems, and everything is automatically synced via the Garmin Connect app. A built-in coach offers on-screen workouts and breathing classes. Usually priced at £329.99, yulife users can buy theirs today by access a 25% discount on the product.
Not only do yulifers get up to 40% on Garmin devices, we’re also happy to announce that from the beginning of February, we’ll be offering 25% off on all Fitbit devices! This can get your team to a great start if they’re looking into buying a wearable, or even get you an incredible discount if you want to treat them.
4. Track your benefits programme
If you’re offering any wellbeing benefits such as a gym subscription, sometimes it’s difficult to tell if and how many people are using it. Wearables track activity, which will allow your team to appreciate those benefits even more, as well as allow you to get more accurate feedback from them. Mostly, you won’t be able to grab the data yourself, but this data would be on your team’s mind when you survey them or discuss it with them in catch-up meetings.
5. Monitor stress and help solve it
Physical health is extremely important, but so is mental health. Stress has been named a 21st century epidemic, and workplaces around the world are trying to significantly change their companies to accommodate for better mental health. In fact, poor mental health costs the UK £94 billion a year! Wearables are a great way to monitor stress through heart-rate, but also encourage solutions such as meditation and more frequent breaks.
6. Build a community
By syncing fitness devices together, your employees can compete with each other. This healthy competition can encourage them to do more, as well as bond your teams and wider parts of the company together. Not only will this make the changes they’ve made to their lives stick more, it will make your company a more inclusive place and create real friendships based on wellbeing.
7. Promote a wellbeing culture
Encouraging your team’s wellbeing is a lot easier if it’s on their minds, as well as on their peers’ minds. In order to do so, you need to create a culture of wellbeing at your office. It’s all about making wellbeing something conscious, that your team thinks about every day.
Wearables are a great way to spark that conversation. With the nudges your people will get from the wearables, there’s no chance they’ll forget - and when one employee talks about walking more or the importance of relaxation, more employees will follow, creating an encouraging environment.
8. Incentivise your team
It might not be an inherent use of wearables, but it’s still another great way to utilise their popularity to promote office wellbeing. You can offer wearables to winners of competitions you run, or as a treat or a bonus for high performers. That way, not only are you relieving the cost of the wearable and encouraging individual health with this shiny new award, you’ll also be making wearables an even more sought after product and inspire a wellbeing culture this way.
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