Humana announces employee health-tracking mobile app
- Humana is using technology to bring health and well-being to the workplace with its new mobile app, according to a company statement. The app, Goal Guru, gathers data from multiple trackers and mobile apps that let users interact with others in competitions, challenges and tracking wellness goals. The app also gives users 24/7 access to a digital coach and custom news feeds throughout the day.
- Goal Guru is described as an easy-to-use resource for employers that aims to improve employees’ activity levels by monitoring their weight, sleep and wellness-oriented activities. According to the statement, Goal Guru will provide insight into employees’ healthcare costs.
- According to the statement, a joint study by Humana and the University of Michigan showed that 67 percent of employees said participating in wellness programs raised their engagement levels. Another study sponsored by Humana and the Economist Intelligence Unit found that employers who have a definitive wellness culture can improve their workers’ health and productivity.
Studies generally conclude that workplace wellness programs, which may include wearable tech, increase employee engagement and productivity. Digital motivators like the app make wellness programs interesting for employees. Humana isn't the first to release specific health apps, either; Aetna has already pledge to develop software specifically for Apple Watches.
There are, however, still legal considerations for employers regarding wellness programs. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, for instance, just issued a final rule on workplace wellness programs to protect employees’ health information under current laws. Critics have also raised concerns over health data privacy, although HR observers believe 2017 will feature further growth of health data usage within the employee benefits space.