There’s a lot of buzz in the HR Technology industry about “wearables” lately. Are wearables just a passing trend or a staying force in the market? Should wearables be considered as part of an evolving Digital Workplace? This post will discuss some of the benefits to both employees and employers on the role of wearables.
But first – what is a “wearable?” The wearables we keep hearing about are actually computer wearables. The definition of a computer wearable is “a battery-powered computer small enough to be worn on the body.” (EncartaDictionaries)
A few of the most common wearables are the Fitbit and the Apple Watch. Many companies have begun investing significant dollars into procuring wearables for their employees in an effort to increase engagement, increase productivity, improve healthy habits and lower healthcare costs. (Target and GoDaddy.com are just a few of the companies that have offered Fitbits to their employees in recent months.)
Why would employees be interested in the wearables? The incentives for employees are access to information that can help them achieve better health, greater emotional well-being and the opportunities to develop stronger social relationships and a sense of community with co-workers.
What are the benefits for employers? The value isn’t in the wearable itself, but rather, the data and information the wearable produces or consumes. If employers are able to get the activity information from a Fitbit or allow access to corporate applications through an Apple Watch, there’s value in investing in wearables.
How serious should your company be about leveraging wearables as a part of your Digital Workplace? Many companies are giving it serious consideration and it’s worth doing some research on the options and costs. This is definitely a staying force and the potential exists for increased productivity and employee engagement. Getting access to the data and results, along with a thoughtful rollout and incentive plan, will be the keys to long-term success.
The concept of wearables in the workplace is just one of the many ways technology is being used to increase employee engagement. Are you looking to make a greater impact on your employee experience in 2016? Is employee engagement a priority for your organization but you need some guidance on where to start? RBA can help you leverage technology to create an effective and engaging digital workplace for your organization.