Tech Startup Asks Employees To Keep Diet And Exercise Log


Citizen gathers health and fitness data to know if healthy workers are happier and more productive.

Leah Gonzalez
  • 19 april 2013

Citizen, a mobile tech company in Portland, Oregon, has taken their health and wellness programs in an interesting direction. The company encourages its employees to submit health and fitness data such as what they eat, how much they exercise, and how many hours of sleep they get to a central server as part of their wellness program to determine whether healthy employees are indeed happier or more productive.

The system is called C3PO or Citizen Evolutionary Process Organism. It takes a cue from the quantified self movement, which is basically self-tracking your well-being with statistics, by gathering information from personal self-tracking tools, like RunKeeper and Fitbit, and several software tools within the company–their project management tool and time tracking application, for instance–to determine how the employees are doing. The main goal of the program is to help employees become more productive by developing better personal habits.

The program at Citizen is fairly new and is completely voluntary. Only about 10% of its employees have signed up for the program and the company can only access information that the employee gives access to. Employees can also take their information with them if they leave the company.

The company is aware of the potential privacy issues that can come out of the program, but for now those working on the system are determined committed to making it work. They hope that they can use the system to change how the company operates or improve their attrition rate.


Image by Klint Finley (via Wired)

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