Apple is kind of taking over the world, aren’t they? Sure that might sound like an outrageous statement, but think about their new campus, and what they offer to their employees. What does one need that’s not inside those four walls? I mean, sure, you need a place to live, but they have virtually everything. In fact, they are now launching their own medical clinics, in an attempt to have more control over their own employee health care. This is a bit different than what Amazon has done with Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway, as Apple plans to offer its employees “the world’s best healthcare experience”.
On the surface, that’s kind of a tall order, isn’t it? I mean there are so many problems with healthcare in America, so how are they going to be able to do it? Well, the opposite is true in this case as well. America is one of the only countries in the world where you can pay for healthcare, and get the “best” experience. So sure, if you have money, then you can get whatever it is that you want. While I sound a bit jaded in this assessment, its to demonstrate that there are a lot of people in America who are unable to get any kind of healthcare. But the minute that you get some money in your pocket, all of that changes.
On one hand, I think this is a great employee benefit, but on the other hand, do the people who work there need additional healthcare benefits?Apple intends on building two clinics that are being described as “multiple, stunning state-of-the-art medical centers”. One will be built just north of its Cupertino HQ, while the other will be built inside the Apple Park headquarters. The company is known as AC Wellness, and some former Stanford Health Care employees have started working for the company.
But what is Apple’s goal with this? “To provide a unique concierge-like healthcare experience.. enabled by technology”. Which is key, in my opinion. I mean, this is the business that Apple is in, so it only makes sense that they want to deliver more technology-based services. Even if it’s just to their employees at this point. This does beg the question though – is Apple using its employees as guinea pigs?
I think that conceptually, they are. But I don’t think Apple is being as invasive about it as I am suggesting. On top of providing doctors, nurses and medical staff, it looks like Apple will focus a lot on prevention. They say “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Meaning, in this case specifically, the more you can do to prevent something from happening, the better off you will be. Of course, in this case, we’re talking about health. But where it gets interesting is that Apple is looking for “designers” to put together programs aimed at promoting healthy living.
The reason that this is such a great initiative is that Apple has over 120,000 employees. US tech firms are notorious for spending more, per employee, on healthcare, than a lot of other industries? The reason for this could be the fact that we’re constantly working with technology, or sitting at our desk. Productivity tends to be the goal in the tech industry. This often translates to long hours, and lack of work/life balance. But at the same time, Apple needs to be careful as their greatest asset is their people. On one hand, Apple could save a lot of money with this, but it’s also a really beneficial thing to have in place.