Help your employees make better healthcare decisions. Think mobile.

Remember way back in 2014? March 2014 marked the inflection point when more people in the U.S. started accessing the Internet via mobile devices than through desktops. That was almost two years ago, so of course the numbers for mobile use are even more compelling now. Smartphone apps now consume two out of every three digital media minutes. Plenty of people that don’t own desktops or laptops – or have access to them at work – have smartphones. And that includes your employees.

A colleague of mine recently told me about an interesting experience he had during a meeting with the benefits team at a Fortune 500 company that runs a large manufacturing operation. On the way to the meeting, he walked past several factory buildings with workers coming and going, most of them with eyes on their smartphones. So it was a surprise when, during the meeting, the company’s benefit leader dismissed the idea of giving employees mobile access to their health benefits platform, saying  “They don’t need mobile. It’s too much technology.”

Well, in fact, that’s exactly what they need. Mobile is fast. Mobile is convenient. Mobile is personal. At the end of the day, nothing is more personal than the combination of mobile and healthcare. Mobile access lets employees easily get to the health benefits information they need, when they need it, no matter where they are. Ask your employees if they ever forget their wallet or smart phone at home when they leave for work. Which one would they always go back to retrieve?

Most Americans have come to rely on their mobile phones for everything from getting up on time (alarm apps like Wake) and driving directions (Google Maps) to reminders to pick up their kids on time (calendar apps like Wave). Mobile has even over taken the desktop for Google searches.

Here’s our opinion:  If you want to drive more health benefits engagement, your strategy should be mobile first. Because the employees you’re trying to reach  – that’s their mindset. Plus,  they have their phones with them. All. The. Time.

This is why we drive continuous innovation in our mobile app for our health benefits platform. It empowers your employees to find the right benefits programs and resources and make informed healthcare decisions on the go, whenever and wherever they are. This is true whether they are blue-collar or white-collar employees.

I’ll give you a personal example. I used our mobile app to connect with Doctor On Demand for my daughter when she was sick at home. I scheduled a video appointment and set everything up using the Castlight app, and then we sat at home on the couch and had a video consultation with a doctor on my phone. It was simply incredible.

Another example highlights how your employees can use Castlight’s mobile app wherever they are. Let’s say an employee is given a prescription during a doctor’s appointment. When given the prescription, she can search for a cheaper, generic alternative on her phone and discuss the pros and cons with her doctor. This is real money savings right out of her (mobile) wallet. She can also look up the most convenient pharmacy and request her prescription be sent there.

It’s 2016. Mobile access isn’t new, but it’s definitely easier. And the demographic writing is on the wall. Mobile is the lingua franca of your employee population. Speak their language. Find out how Castlight Mobile can engage employees to make better healthcare decisions.