These companies are tracking the fitness of their employees
Staff at a London analytics company are obligated to take part in an experiment that sees them using a variety of apps to monitor their entire lives – and according to its founder, if they “didn’t want to do it, [they] were out.”
Rob Symes, founder of The Outside View, believes he is only asking employees to live by the cultural values of the business as a way to understand – and outsmart – competition. “To be brutal, it’s a cool idea … we want the company to unlock its own potential.”
Employees of The Outside View, based in Shoreditch, have to download a variety of smartphone apps that helps them to track everything from the amount of time they sleep, the distance they walk or run, what they eat, how much time they spend sitting at their desk and are even required to input their ‘happiness’ levels.
But that’s not all. Staff are also currently participating in an intensive exercise programme with the help of the Centre for Health and Human Performance (CHHP) on Harley Street, an organisation that traditionally helps those preparing for major surgery – or getting ready to climb Everest.
At the first session a baseline test is performed, giving each participant an idea of their level of fitness. Based on the results, employees are given a nutrition and workout plan.
“The idea is not to just go to the gym but to get an ideal scenario. So it’s not that you have to feel bad for having a muffin [if it makes you happy],” explains Symes, who is also taking part in the project.
Staff then attend tailored weekly sessions at the centre that last between 15 and 30 minutes but can be as effective as a 90-minute workout in the gym.
This is all part of The Outside View’s Health, Wealth and Happiness programme, which Symes refers to as the company’s version of Google’s 20% time (where engineers were given an opportunity to work on side projects).
The Guardian, These companies are tracking the fitness of their employees [Siraj Datoo | 17 March 2014].