Personalisation is key to the successful implementation of and engagement with digital health innovations, according to Mercer.
The employee benefit consultant’s inaugural Health on Demand survey found 62% of UK employers plan to invest more in digital health solutions over the next five years.
Almost half of employees (47%) are excited by the prospect of digital health innovation, however there are considerable differences in how employees perceive the value of and engage with digital health innovations.
The research, conducted by Mercer Marsh Benefits, Mercer and Oliver Wyman, surveyed 16,000 employees and 1,300 employers in 13 markets around the world, including over 1,000 employees and 100 companies across the UK.
Tony Wood, UK leader of Mercer Marsh Benefits, said “health on demand” solutions can supplement existing benefits and help to secure access to treatment and services.
However, he added that businesses must avoid the temptation to simply provide more products and solutions without considering whether they are right for their workforce.
The research found that employees can be divided into four distinct segments based on their attitudes to health innovations, their confidence in health solutions sponsored by employers, and their likelihood of staying with an employer offering these solutions.
In the UK the “get me comfortable” group is the dominant group (43%). They are receptive to new health innovations but are not confident so would like their employer to take a paternalistic approach.
The “sign me up” group (34%) are tech savvy and confident.
Both groups are less likely to leave employers who offer digital health solutions.
“The findings from the Health on Demand survey confirm our belief that employers looking to build a workplace culture of wellbeing and to improve talent retention should consider digital health investments,” said Hervé Balzano, Mercer Marsh Benefits international leader and Mercer president, health. “Otherwise they risk being left behind in today’s competitive global labour markets.”
The survey also found the wider the range of health and wellbeing resources an employer offers, the more likely employees are to feel supported and energised, and the less likely they are to leave their employer.
Of the UK employees who are offered 10 or more such benefits, 62% believe their employer cares about them, compared to just 38% of those offered five or fewer.