Issue: November/December 2010
Put down that squeeze ball, and pick up the Cleveland Clinic’s new stress-relief app.
The last thing most cubicle jockeys want to do is spend more time in front of a computer or laptop as a means to unwind.
But that’s how stressed-out sorts were trying to decompress after signing up for Stress Free Now, an online stress-management program available on the Cleveland Clinic’s 360-5.com wellness website. Practicing the 15- to 30-minute meditation technique introduced during each of the course’s eight weeks was particularly tedious.
“People were suggesting, ‘Boy, I’d like some mobility in doing those meditations. It’s something I might want to take on an airplane,’ ” recalls Tom Gubanc, director of IT and e-commerce for the Clinic’s Wellness Enterprise.
That demand resulted in the Clinic’s first for-sale smart-phone app, Stress Meditations, a collection of eight meditation techniques based on those in the Stress Free Now program.
Consider it your virtual yogi.
Gubanc and his team worked with consultants from Independence-based information-technology firm Bennett Adelson to produce the $1.99 app (available for the iPhone and iPod Touch on iTunes since May). Stress Meditations not only supports the Clinic’s wellness mission but also provides a prototype for promoting its growing online offerings.
The app includes familiar stress-busters such as guided imagery and meditations with names such as “A Calm Mind.” Touching the image above each title brings up info about that selection along with tips. For example, a peaceful image of a mirror-calm lake in a verdant setting is followed by instructions in a soothing female voice.
Customers looking to Zen out on the go will likely grow to include employees of companies looking to use Stress Free Now to lower health care costs. And who couldn’t use a little relief from that?
|The Clinic isn’t the only Northeast Ohio company taking advantage of the smart phone’s increasing popularity by using apps as a business tool.
||Cleveland State University
||Howard Hanna Real Estate Services
|Who’s Using It
||Students, faculty, staff and visitors
||Users can navigate an ever-evolving campus and its services like
fifth-year seniors. “We knew we had to do something,” says Web and
e-initiatives director Tommie Barclay, citing the sheer number of new
CSU facilities this fall.
||An ingenious use of GPS technology puts a list of the 25 closest open houses at Howard Hanna properties on the screen with a single touch. “The concept [makes] life even easier for the consumer as they’re walking or driving around, looking to see what else is open in the area,” says president Howard W. “Hoby” Hanna IV.
||The detail-page buttons can dial up a for-more-information phone number
and map the user’s location in relation to that of the desired service
(the computer lab, for example), which is marked by a caricature of the
CSU Viking mascot. Free for iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch and Droid
||A function that displays screen listings as pins on a map and changes them by touching the desired house-hunting area. Free for iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch
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