28 November 2015

DBS adds integrated health management portal to help employees stay well

Source: DBS. To launch iHealth@DBS, employees were invited to participate in a mass workout at DBS Asia Hub.

DBS Bank has launched an integrated health management portal, iHealth@DBS, to further promote a culture of wellness among its employees. The one-stop platform aims to drive long-term behavioural change among staff via interactive engagement on digital platforms including mobile and wearables.

iHealth@DBS is the latest addition to a holistic suite of wellness benefits available to DBS employees. The perks include a robust portable medical insurance scheme and flexible health benefits that empower staff to actively manage their health and wellbeing.

According to the National Health Survey conducted in 2010, around 40% of Singaporeans are overweight, as indicated by their body mass indexes (BMI). In addition, almost one in two Singaporeans suffer from borderline high or high cholesterol. On the back of this trend, DBS wants to further encourage staff to take charge of their health and lead a lifestyle that keeps illness at bay.

Further, The Tower Watson Staying@Work 2013/2014 Asia Pacific report found that corporations that have well-executed health and wellness programmes show lower absenteeism rates and 39% improvement in overall employee performance at work. Through an internal study, DBS found that having healthier employees has resulted in greater productivity and cost savings, which in turn increases the bank’s ability to invest in employee health and present staff with better and more flexible health benefits.

Cheong Meng Foong, Group Head of Rewards at DBS, said, “DBS takes a long-term view to employee health as we aspire to be the employer of choice. Over the last three years, we’ve adopted a holistic approach to keeping our staff healthy. In addition to providing health benefits, it is also important to drive behavioural change by making it easy for employees to integrate healthy living practices into their everyday lives. iHealth@DBS is designed to empower employees to focus on health initiatives that are most applicable to their lifestyles.”

All 21,000 employees across the bank’s six key markets now have individual iHealth accounts, which provide customised information that address their nutritional, social, physical and financial health needs. iHealth@DBS also makes use of data analytics to help staff formulate plans to reach specific fitness goals. Used together with fitness trackers, this helps employees monitor their nutrition, sleeping patterns and physical activity.

To kickstart this lifestyle change, the bank has launched its inaugural iStep Challenge – where employees are encouraged to form teams and compete to see who can clock the most number of steps in ten weeks. Close to 30% of DBS staff have signed up for this challenge. With the push to make healthy living fun, the bank is riding on the increasing popularity of wearables, and has provided FitBugs to participating employees to make it simpler for them to track their progress as they embark on a healthier lifestyle.

iHealth@DBS is, however, just one of the many initiatives the bank has undertaken to promote a culture of healthy living amongst staff. Since 2011, the bank has provided free annual health screenings for all employees, which helps in the early detection of diseases. These also allow DBS to identify health trends and come up with measures to proactively help employees safeguard against potential health issues.

With the push for companies to adopt portable medical solutions, DBS is one of the first to offer the “Shield Companion Plan” – a game-changing medical plan that complements its employees’ portable enhanced MediShield Plan, reducing duplication of medical coverage. Under this scheme, the bank pays a certain amount into their MediSave accounts to subsidise their portable medical plans premium.

In addition, employees also have an iFlex account – a flexible spending account provided by the bank every year which can be used for benefits customised to each employee’s personal preferences. Staff can use their iFlex dollars on a variety of items relating to health and wellness, and work-life balance for themselves and their family. These can include dependent medical, vision care, health screening, dental expenses and even travel expenses.