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COSMOnauts go around the globe in 100 days

Björn Lorenz05/22/2018

The COSMO CONSULT Group, Europe's leading Microsoft Dynamics partner, is supporting the successful worldwide health initiative Virgin Pulse Global Challenge again this year. In teams, employees embark on a virtual journey around the world over the course of one hundred days. If you want progress, you have to get moving: Steps and sports activities are counted. The goal of the program is to raise people’s awareness of their own health and promote healthy lifestyle habits. The number of participating COSMOnauts increased by 50 percent compared to last year, rising to 420 employees in 60 teams worldwide. The Global Challenge will kick off on 23 May 2018. 

We spend too much time sitting: at breakfast, on the way to work, in the office - even in the evening when we meet with friends. We are often not even aware how much time we spend sitting because it has long since become a habit. Changing that habit is one of the key objectives of the  successful worldwide Virgin Pulse Global Challenge. The program focuses on enthusiasm for sports and team spirit: Around 450,000 employees from 1,500 companies from around the world compete against each other in teams of seven. Over a period of 100 days, they try to reach the magic number of 10,000 steps per day. Not only actual steps count, but also performances in other sports such as cycling or swimming, which are converted into a corresponding number of steps.

Going digital to improve health

The monotonous job of doing the counting is done by a sports tracker, which is made available to all employees free of charge. Alternatively, they can use the sports watches that they already have. The steps of the participants are constantly synchronized with the Global Challenge website via an app and attributed to the respective team. The more miles the team racks up, the faster they move on the virtual map and the more places they can visit. Employees can also enter data on their health and eating habits and receive tips on balanced nutrition and healthy sleep. 

Doing sports together promotes team spirit

The COSMO CONSULT Group, Europe's leading Microsoft Dynamics partner, is participating in the Global Challenge for the second time. Last year, the software and consulting company had 40 teams participating in the virtual world tour. This time it is represented by 60 teams with 420 employees. "In our industry we spend too much time sitting at our desks. We have to make sure that we do enough sports and exercise. The Global Challenge is a wonderful way to raise awareness about this issue," said Kim Helmig, head of human resources and initiator of the Global Challenge at the COSMO CONSULT Group. An additional benefit is that the program also promotes better teamwork and more solidarity. "The health program has brought many people together over the past year within the company. We had international teams and teams made up of members from different locations. The communication this entailed forged many new ties," she adds. Many employees even lost a few pounds during the Global Challenge. 

A healthy lifestyle is something you can practice

Don’t expect everything to be over and done with after 100 days. The program has a long-term perspective: During the Global Challenge, every employee racks up steps for the team, maybe by taking the stairs instead of the elevator or by covering short distances on foot or using by bicycle. This can change old habits and teach health-conscious behaviors that are often retained even after the program ends. The participants can see their success. Via app or browser, they can track the improvements they achieve in exercise, sleep and nutrition - and also how the team compares to the competition. Team spirit and sporting challenges are great motivators for many people. To top it off, the best three COSMO CONSULT teams will probably get prizes again this year. 

The feel-good factor is the way to success

In keeping with the guiding principle of "business software for people", employee health has always been a top priority in the COSMO CONSULT Group’s canon of values. In addition to the Global Challenge, the software and consulting firm supports other initiatives to promote health. These include massages, back-strengthening exercises, sport programs and various measures to improve the work-life balance of employees. "Our success depends on the ideas, creativity and dedication of our employees. A healthy, balanced lifestyle is one of the things that have a positive impact on personal performance. We want to promote the well-being of our employees and for them to feel happy at our company. With programs like the Global Challenge, we can create the right work environment to achieve this,” says Uwe Bergmann, CEO of the COSMO CONSULT Group. The company’s commitment to its employees pays off. In 2017, the software and consulting company received the “TOP-Job” award for employers, which is awarded by an independent jury based on employee reviews.

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