Active workplaces – it matters

A healthy workforce, by definition, is more productive, has better morale and is more goal-oriented.

The Medical Journal of Australia says a recent study showed that an increase in steps from 4,500 to 8,800 is associated with one less day in the hospital for every three years for Australians over 55 years old.

Amy McDonough, Senior Vice President of Strategy & Operations Manager for Fitbit Health Solutions, says that Australian workplaces are waking up to the value of getting their workforces to not only be active, but to take a team spirit approach.

Recently, Cisco’s Australian offices launched CiscoACTIVE, a two-month wellness initiative to bring a culture of wellness into their workplace and implementing Fitbit Health Solution’s corporate wellness program by offering a fully subsidised Fitbit Charge 2, or other premium Fitbit devices at a reduced rate.

CiscoACTIVE included nutrition webinars, onsite fitness sessions, gym membership discounts and activity challenges paired with Fitbit devices with four step challenges—where employees were challenged to achieve certain goals, such as reaching the greatest number of steps, beating the CEO’s and other senior leadership team’s step counts, hitting the most active minutes and achieving the most improved step count. Creative mini-challenges were also involved, like who could post the best healthy selfie on social media. Challenge winners were eligible to win health empowerment tools such as Fitbit products, like accessory bands and Fitbit Aria WiFi smart scales.


At the end of CiscoACTIVE, 50 per cent of participants achieved an average of 10,000+ steps a day—an increase from 43 per cent at the beginning of the program. Survey feedback was positive, with 86 per cent of participants reporting being more active since receiving their Fitbit device and 95 per cent intending to continue increasing their physical activity once the CiscoACTIVE program ended, and 74 per cent being likely to recommend a similar wellness program that incorporated the use of Fitbit devices.

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