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Experts advise tech is the “front door to wellbeing” 

Health and wellbeing experts are highlighting the need for employers to simplify their wellbeing technology to better support employee engagement. 

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The advice comes as new data from REBA shows that, for nearly nine in 10 organisations (88 percent), employees face barriers when it comes to engaging with benefits tech. Accordingly, nearly two-thirds of employers (64 percent) say that improving employee engagement with technology is their primary objective when reviewing benefits technology.

 

The report also shows that the key barriers employers feel their workforces are facing when it comes to engaging with benefits technology are:

  • A lack of awareness among employees of certain offerings (63 percent);
  • Poor communication (10 percent);
  • Poor end-user experience (10 percent);
  • ‘Other’ factors were cited by six percent of respondents;
  • 12 percent had no employee engagement issues at all.

Martin Blinder, chief executive at global health and wellbeing platform Tictrac, said: “Alarmingly, this lack of engagement comes at a time when employees need the most support. We know that 79 percent of employees are facing health and wellbeing worries and, of course, employers want to do what’s best for their people. Ensuring they have the right technology is essential - however, this is only part of the strategy to succeed.

 

“Good tech is a front door to wellbeing, enabling more easily distributed services to many users and making wellbeing support more accessible and inclusive. By its very nature, technology is engaging, however, tech is purely the delivery mechanism. For engagement to truly strengthen, employers must still assist employees, communicate wellbeing initiatives and ensure they understand what’s fully on offer in order to get them started. From there, technology can do incredible things.”

 

The report also shows that engagement is not the only issue. Though 69 percent of employers have technology wellbeing benefits in place, less than a quarter (24 percent) use this tech to understand how their benefits initiatives help them deliver against their wellbeing strategy.

 

Yet Blinder advises that user engagement and accurately measuring wellbeing strategies go hand in hand: “Key to gaining insights and measuring wellbeing strategies is a user base that’s engaged and active. From here, good technology can collect aggregated - but anonymous - insights that HR can use to interpret employee behaviours, needs and risks. For example, we can see that, during the first lockdown, a large impetus was placed on physical health whereas during the second lockdown, it was largely mental health focused. Insights like these help employers better understand their teams and adjust their wellbeing strategies accordingly. Those that provide the support and technology to keep their teams engaged will better succeed when it comes to strategy.”

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