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Effective and engaging support during an uncertain time

By Jason Brennan

Director of Wellbeing and Leadership at Wrkit

Now that 2020 is gradually coming to a close and we look ahead into 2021, it is with some relief that a most strange and unusual year is winding up. November and December is traditionally a time of reflection and assessment, looking back on the year that has been and thinking about the future and what next year might bring.

For all businesses and member associations 2020 has brought about a lot of difficulties and uncertainty and everyone has worked hard to dig in and effectively respond to the challenges that Covid 19 brought. Individuals, leaders, business sectors and member associations have had to respond very quickly and be very resilient to the initial effects and impacts of Covid, while considering the longer-term implications and challenges ahead.

One very effective way of getting through this uncertain year was for businesses and associations to work together and find other companies to help bolster support and protection, to be creative in the type of support they can provide their staff, contractors, managers and leaders.

Wrkit, with headquarters in Dublin Ireland, is one of these supportive companies that have reached out and provided that support to hundreds of companies, membership associations and hundreds of thousands of workers in 2020. Supporting businesses for over 20 years, Wrkit is very experienced in providing the type of services that help drive engagement, motivation, personal and professional development and wellbeing.

Wrkit provides a comprehensive benefits and engagement portal, accessible 24/7 with a variety of engaging products and services, and during Covid lock down their portal has been launched quickly and easily to hundreds of organisations to support their people’s mental, physical and financial wellbeing. Most recently Wrkit have partnered with the RCSA to provide this essential support to all their valued members and staff in Australia and New Zealand.

The Lifestyle and Savings portal provides users with hundreds of discounted offers to help all members and staff benefit from many heavily discounted products and services, a key provision to enhance financial wellness during the Covid challenges.

The Learning portal gives users access to over 4500+ online learning courses from some of the world’s leading educational providers, with a good balance of personal and professional development courses to help people stay engaged and motivated while working remotely. With 92% of these courses being free, it is also a great additional financial support in enhancing self-development and ongoing learning.

Perhaps the most beneficial module that Wrkit provides is POWR.

POWR stands for Positive Occupational Wellbeing Resources and is an internet-based wellness application that all members and staff can access remotely and can easily download to their mobile phones and ipads or access from their computers. POWR provides access to hundreds of wellbeing articles, blogs and videos and is built around the 6 pillars of Mind, Life, Work, Sleep, Active and Food.

The team of Psychologists who support Google Ireland came together with Wrkit to help build POWR, to provide a realistic and personalised health consultancy experiences at scale. Each pillar has a number of wellness questionnaires to help the POWR user measure their wellbeing in each of the 6 areas. Once all questionnaires are complete, they see their overall wellbeing or POWR score.

POWR then offers them behaviour change plans in each of these areas, ranging from 1 day to 28 day plans. Once any of these plans are completed the user can rescore themselves and see their wellness score increase.

During the COVID lockdown, the POWR team saw a huge increase in a number of the plans being accessed by people working remotely in all sectors and as well as a 50% increase in the Mind plans, there was a 485% uptake of the Active , 285% increase in food and 275% in Life, with work and sleep being around 200% increase. This indicated that while working remotely many users looked to POWR for support in these key areas as they were struggling with lack of exercise, being challenged with work life boundaries and of course their sleep was being impacted.

Many other aspects of POWR have proven to be hugely beneficial in helping users better manage their emotional and mental wellbeing through daily access to meditations, clinically based breathing techniques, a positive psychology based reflecting process and mood enhancing music.

The collaboration between Wrkit and RCSA is proving to be another link in how to best support sectors such as contractors and staff, who are being affected by the uncertainty that COVID has created and is bringing another level of engagement and connection in building working communities globally.

Jason Brennan is the Wellness & Leadership Director at  Wrkit. Jason has been a psychotherapist for over 25 years and has helped many people grow and develop in themselves, in the work they do and in the relationships they have.

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