eHealth is changing the very way in which we deliver, discuss and follow up on our health. The shift taking place in healthcare includes health-promoting in workplaces, which is a prioritized health-promoting arena. It is in and from our workplaces that we get “affected” both physically and mentally. We are rewarded economically and our own well-being translates into our families’ well-being.
Promoting health in the workplaces already takes on many different forms today, but digitalized health services is definitely adding new potential and opportunities. Let me discuss a few:
- Personalized health promotion just got upgraded and quantified. Everyone interested in their own health can register and follow up with activity gadgets, apps and services. This allows us to quantify our results and discuss them with healthcare professionals in a more evidence-based manner than before. We can e.g. register stress levels, activity levels, heartrate (ECG) and emotions during a work day to identify risks and areas for improvement.
- Leadership support can be tailor-made and transparent. How leaders act and react among their employees has a direct link to workers well-being. Leaders show that they care about well-being by trusting workers, by discussing goalsetting in a participated manner and by encouraging everyone to reach their full creative potential. With digitalization, we are able to rearrange communication patterns in organizations by using new platforms, new routines and new content (vlog, pod, slack, workplace well-being surveys). More and more work is carried out in virtual spaces, where also HR and leadership needs to participate.
- Organized and strategic workplace risk analysis is made possible through digitalized health and sickness follow-ups. Several factors hazard employees’ health in different ways. Health knowledge management combines health statistics of workers with working conditions, placing real-time feedback in the center of the work development.
Digital solutions and eHealth, being disruptive in their nature and offering vast potential, serves as a positive tension and offers the opportunity for changes in workplace health promotion. The question is how to harness this momentum for improving health and well-being? We all agree that a competitive edge is created by having a healthy, engaged and creative workforce. At the same time, we are having difficulties knowing how to measure it or how to achieve it. However, with a health-promoting mind-set we can keep abreast with changes and adopt to them for promoting health and wellness.