By focusing first on the needs of the employee, the health plan
digital concierge approach builds trust through human relation-ships
in order to better influence engagement and health outcomes
in the long run.
2. MEET EMPLOYEES WHERE THEY ARE
To better engage employees toward improved health, employees
need a more convenient, accessible and personalized way to man-age
Follow these strategies to ensure your health plan can offer an
experience that drives employee engagement and satisfaction.
DELIVER OMNICHANNEL ENGAGEMENT
No one likes playing phone tag. That’s why employers should
expect health plans to provide health management support
through a combination of phone calls, messaging, apps, web and
video chat so employees can choose the method that meets their
needs in the moment. Mobile messaging ensures flexibility and
accessibility, so employees can respond on their own time; rather
than during business hours.
PROVIDE A PERSONALIZED EXPERIENCE
To help employees better manage medical conditions, avoid a
one-size-fits all approach to patient education. Instead, make sure
health plans can deliver dynamic, adaptable health programs with
videos, digestible articles, reminders and more health guidance
designed to suit the individual needs of each employee.
BUILD TRUSTED, SUPPORTIVE RELATIONSHIPS
An effective health management solution should give employees
daily, long-term support from real clinicians, rather than inter-mittent
outreach. Organizations should also consider utilizing
a non-clinical engagement specialist, also known as a Health
Advocate, to offer ongoing emotional support and encouragement
through mobile messaging. The Health Advocate can work with
the employee over time to set and track progress toward specific,
measurable actionable, relevant and time-bound (SMART) goals.
3. SUPPORT THE WHOLE PERSON TO GET
It’s estimated that approximately 80 per cent of health outcomes
are determined by non-medical factors such as behaviour, envi-ronment
and socioeconomics. In other words, employees’ health
happens at home.
In an attempt to address these numerous health factors, many
organizations employ a number of standalone point solutions,
such as wellness programs, texting services or condition-specific
apps, like diabetes programs. According to a Wellframe survey,
on average, organizations manage between four and nine differ-ent
digital point solutions. However, instead of helping employees
reach their health goals, this approach risks leaving them over-whelmed
or confused by often overlapping services.
To improve employees’ experience, reduce absenteeism and dif-ferentiate
your benefits package, make sure the chosen health plan
delivers holistic support that encourages employees to adopt a new
perspective on all the factors that contribute to their health.
SUPPORT MULTIPLE CONDITIONS IN A SINGLE SOLUTION
Chronic conditions are on the rise, but most condition-specific
point solutions, such as diabetes apps, can’t address the overlap-ping
symptoms employees may experience. Instead, make sure
health plans offer support for multiple conditions in one solution,
like diabetes, hypertension and more, as well as transitional care.
ADDRESS MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH
People with a medical illness or condition are more likely to suffer
from depression, but the reverse is also true: Anxiety and depres-sion
are risk factors for other illnesses and drive higher incidences
of heart disease, diabetes, stroke and more conditions. To support
employees’ whole-health needs, it’s crucial to deliver behavioural
health support alongside condition-related guidance.
REINFORCE LIFESTYLE CHANGES
To meet their health goals, most employees also need support for
weight loss, nutrition and exercise – tangible lifestyle factors they
can meaningfully change to improve their health. Providing useful
information to help them shop for healthy foods, track their physi-cal
activity and more, within the context of their clinical condition,
will help employees understand how therapeutic lifestyle changes
can have a positive, direct impact on their health.
Organizations shouldn’t have to bear the burden of managing
numerous outsourced services and vendors that address slivers of
health management. Instead, employers should demand more from
their health plan partners, who are in the best position to deliver
these solutions in a holistic and integrated fashion. Employers
who partner with progressive health plans can stay competitive in
a tight job market, control costs and engage employees toward bet-ter
health by delivering the following capabilities:
■■ Help employees navigate the complexities of the
■■ Meet employees where they are with convenient, digital and
■■ Support the whole person across chronic conditions, mental
health and wellness to achieve better results. n
Jacob Sattelmair is the CEO and co-founder of Wellframe.
health & safety
KNOWN AS DIGITAL HEALTH
MANAGEMENT, THIS NEW
APPROACH TAKES MORE OF
THE BURDEN OFF OF EMPLOYER
BENEFITS LEADERS WHILE
DELIVERING ENHANCED EMPLOYEE
EXPERIENCE AND OUTCOMES.
48 ❚ NOVEMBER 2018 ❚ HR PROFESSIONAL