mHealth Wearables Help Employers Achieve Higher Corporate Wellness Participation Rates

26 Sep 2016

Wearable wireless devices continue to push in to corporate wellness programs as a range of previously disparate players, from wearable device manufacturers to health insurance providers, partner, and collaborate. Their combined efforts will help push more than 44 million wearable devices into wellness plans over the next five years, finds ABI Research.

“Though $6 billion is spent on corporate wellness in the US alone, measuring the value of that investment is challenging,” says Ryan Harbison, Research Analyst at ABI Research. “Wearable fitness device vendors, including Fitbit and FitLinxx, stepped up from just offering devices to pushing integrated wellness offerings with initiatives to drive employee engagement and provide measureable feedback from corporate program participation.”

These new corporate wellness programs, often integrated with engagement tools and platforms from other players, allow employers to monitor and manage activity data in near real time so that they can provide incentive for individual, team, and company-wide activity progress. Early data suggests that corporate wellness programs with wearable devices increase average employee participation from 20 percent to between 60 and 70 percent, with some employers reporting participation rates above 90 percent.

But corporate wellness is a market where device manufacturers are under growing competition. For example, U.S. health insurance giant UnitedHealthcare recently developed its own proprietary device leveraging Qualcomm Life’s 2net platform to deliver corporate wellness services.

ABI Research stresses that there will be continued convergence of effort with devices bringing employee excitement to drive adoption and engagement, alongside integration into the wider corporate insurance healthcare provision. The influence of these partnerships is likely to be felt beyond just the corporate wellness market.

“Corporate wellness is a vanguard market for the integration of mHealth wearables and healthcare management,” concludes Jonathan Collins, Research Director at ABI Research. “The integrated system that delivers effective, secure and efficient data collection, analysis, and integration for wellness programs has the potential to be leveraged in a new generation of healthcare-centric patient management offerings.”

These findings are from ABI Research’s The Role of Wearable Wireless Devices in Corporate Wellness Programs. This report is part of the company’s Smart Home and Wearables & Devices sectors, which includes research, data, and analyst insights.

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