Employees ‘open to wearable monitoring at work’

More than half of British workers would monitor their health with technology at work if their employer supplied a device to do so, but only 5 per cent have already been given health tech, new research has found.

Smartwatch and activity trackersThe research has found that 57 per cent of UK workers would be open to wearing a company paid-for fitness band or similar device during working hours to help monitor their health and wellbeing, as long as this was supplied to them free of charge by their employer.  This figure increases to nearly two-thirds – 63 per cent, if employers offer workers the device and a financial bonus for wearing it at work.

The research, carried out by YouGov amongst over 2,000 adults for Axa PPP’s Health Tech & You programme, found that 58 per cent of those who would be likely to wear a fitness band at work would be comfortable to share the data generated with their employer if it helped with the organisation’s employee health and wellbeing programmes.

Axa PPP is promoting the use of wearable technology, as well as other tech innovations, through its Health Tech & You Awards, held in association with The Design Museum. The closing date for entries is January 16th.

AXA PPP Healthcare head of proactive health Dr Chris Tomkins says: “The increased use of health tech within the workplace could so easily be a win-win for both employer and employee. For the first time it is possible to support an individual throughout their journey from better understanding of their health to actual improvements through smart digital platforms.  Furthermore, there are often staff schemes with open platforms that enable individuals to use and share information from their own personal devices, ensuring their contribution is recognised.

“Of course, some individuals are naturally concerned about how their data is used and employers are keen to have a clear separation between themselves and such personal data.   Therefore, both employer and employee could benefit from the expertise of using an independent third-party provider who can ensure privacy.”

AXA PPP Healthcare head of digital marketing Richard Cooper says: “The findings of our State of the Nation survey suggest that most employees are open to wearing health tech in the workplace to monitor their health, fitness and wellbeing.  During the last three years, the AXA PPP Health Tech & You Awards programme has identified many new and emerging health tech innovations that we have not only been able to highlight but also share knowledge of with our members and with our client partners for the benefit of their employees via our Proactive Health Gateway service.”