Mad*Pow designed a mobile and web-based wellness tool to get you off your seat.
Mad*Pow collaborated with context communication on Hotseat, a mobile and web-based workplace wellness tool designed to decrease sedentary behavior. A growing body of evidence links the extensive amount of time people spend sitting (9 hours, on average) to an increased risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease, cancer, and more. Hotseat uses employees’ smartphones and a combination of nudges, social accountability and game play to gets employees up and out of their seats regularly throughout the day. The Hotseat mobile app syncs with an employee’s calendar and inserts a variety of 2-minute activity breaks to perform throughout the day. At each scheduled time, the employee is “put in the hotseat” and sent a reminder to take a microactivity break such as chair dips, stair climbing or desk push-ups. Completing the activity earns the employee points and progress is tracked over time, and further encourages employees to take more frequent breaks and build healthier habits.
Hotseat was borne out of a market opportunity for employers. The intent was to develop a comprehensive, yet easy-to-use mobile application specific to one problem, and very focused in its response to that problem. The design goals were for a simple and elegant interface that lowered barriers to use, increased stickiness, and targeted a single core behavior for intervention. Mobile devices are an increasingly valuable tool for behavior change and influence. However, sustained engagement and long-term efficacy tend to be almost impossible to achieve. Mad*Pow believes a core aspect of this problem is with current applications which leverage cumbersome personal data tracking and informational feedback, along with incessant alerts and nagging requests. Hotseat was created with human motivation and social contexts in mind as a primary focus for intervention design. Exhibiting a design that satisfes core motivational needs of autonomy, competence and relatedness and mapping interactions to personal and social contexts, Hotseat exemplifies how effective software can be created that moves us beyond simple technocratic solutions (like nags and graphic feedback) to applications that motivate, engage and deliver meaningful outcomes for users in the real world.