In an effort to combat work fatigue and reduced productivity, Melbourne-founded project management platform Hassl has announced its latest wellbeing feature, which encourages Australia’s workforce to take a series of breaks throughout their workday.
Hassl, which offers project management, files and messaging capabilities on one platform, has collaborated with mindfulness author, researcher and lecturer Dr. Stephen McKenzie to build the new module that prompts users on the platform twice a day to stop and take 20-90-second breaks.
These prompts lock users out of their dashboards and suggest they complete one of a series of different tasks that promote either physical or mental wellness. Some examples include shrugging your shoulders slowly 15 times or practising 90-seconds of mindful breathing.
How has Hassl been performing?
Hassl has 300 active teams on the platform, including Harvard University, Thinkerbell and C2 Capital, as well as over 7,000 signed-up users around the globe. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the platform has seen a change in workflow behaviour in-app;
Hassl users have increased their use of time-tracking features by 25 per cent since March, while there’s also been a 20 per cent increase in the use of Hassl’s team chat feature, with workplaces embracing group meetings.
Co-founder of Hassl, Lauren Crystal, said: “For too long it’s been taboo in the business world to actually take your allocated one-hour lunch break, let alone smaller breaks for the benefit of your wellbeing.
As wellness is so close to our hearts, we knew it was time to change this unfair reality for our customers and businesses worldwide – for teams set up at home as well as those teams transitioning back to the office.
“Company leaders need to encourage their teams to take time out of their work schedules to look after their long-term wellbeing, as the benefits are invaluable for both individuals and businesses themselves. The proof is in the productivity pudding.
“At Hassl, we encourage 2pm ‘Stretch Clubs’, where our team dials in remotely and stretches together in order to not only build team morale, but to also promote healthy habits.
With the announcements of the 25km limit increase we’re giving all our Melbourne-based team extra paid leave to leave their suburbs and get to nature,” Ms Crystal added.
She continued: “Improving Hassl with new features is about figuring out what teams need to make their work life better.
With our own Melbourne-based team working under tough restrictions, we began to notice how important micro-breaks were to staying productive, and sane. To pause and be aware of how you’re feeling both physically and mentally.
“While the feature is a direct response to COVID-19, I believe wellness in the workplace will be part of the new normal.
In the long-term, the rhythm of everyday business in Australia is changing, and if we’re going to keep remote working, companies will want to ensure staff wellbeing is still a priority.”
On the importance of incorporating wellness into the workday, Dr. Stephen McKenzie, said: “To really understand mindfulness and its benefits we need to really practice it, and therefore really experience it.
Mindfulness isn’t an idea, it’s a way of being – who we really are – when we let go of who we think we are.
“There has been a lot of research on mindfulness which supports its benefits for work, study, work, sleep time management, stress and addictions, weight management, general health, anxiety and depression.
When we are mindful, we are more focused and able to fully experience what we are connected to, including other people.
“To get the full benefits of mindfulness you need to understand and practice it,” Dr. McKenzie concluded.
Playgroup Victoria is one of the trial organisations for Hassl’s new wellbeing module. The organisation’s marketing manager, Mylie Nauendorf, said: “Hassl has been the key to our team staying productive and motivated over our seven months of working at home.
The chat function has allowed my team to stay connected, as if we were speaking in the same room. The new wellness module has really given us a new way to work, making mindfulness easy and accessible for myself and my team.
“Since the transition to working from home, I’ve found that Hassl’s wellness module has acted as a personal wellness guide.
As a new manager, having wellness incorporated into my team’s workflow tool lets them know we, as an organisation, prioritise wellbeing throughout lockdown and in the new normal.
“The home life and work life has been so blurred. I’ve enjoyed pressing the button and taking a breath,” Ms Nauendorf ended.
Launched in 2019 by award-winning Melbourne creative agency, Your Creative, co-founders Lauren Crystal, Mitch Furlong and James Lim created Hassl to be a virtual know-it-all.
Their goal was deliberately kept simple – to remove the everyday admin hassles, so project managers can focus their energies on creative matters.
Hassl offers subscriptions for teams at $6 per user per month, with unlimited access to projects, tasks, chats, 100GB and no hidden fees. For more information please visit here.