Emotional wellbeing in working age



AXA PPP healthcare







The Challenge

70% of the UK population is currently in employment, and it is during this life stage that many people experience major life events and transitions. Common milestones include establishing themselves in the workforce, purchasing a home, raising a family, changing careers and retirement planning. Common mental health problems tend to peak in middle age, with those aged 35-59 reporting the highest levels of anxiety as compared to other age groups. The biggest cause of stress for the working age population is workload, followed by financial stress and job security.

The extensiveness of this often silent burden is demonstrated by the prevalence of mental health issues, which affect one in four people on average in any given year. The total cost to UK employers of mental health problems among their staff is estimated at nearly £26 billion each year, resulting in problems of sickness absence, reduced productivity and staff turnover. The stigma associated with mental wellbeing acts as a barrier for many who may be under pressure.

This challenge, therefore, seeks a consumer-focused digital solution that utilises self-monitoring for positive mental wellbeing for those of working age, usable within the workplace and personal life. The solution will address patterns of behaviour that inform the user about how they could improve their mental health, ultimately encouraging long term behaviour change.

The successful solution must:

  • Be easy to use, have a quick and /or seamless data capture method and can fit into a person's daily work routine.
  • Be non-diagnostic to increase acceptance and reduce stigma; accessibility and acceptability is central to creating a socially acceptable way to quantify and improve mental wellbeing.
  • Be empowering to enable the sense of individual mastery over mental wellbeing.
  • Be compelling to encourage sustained use.

Additionally, applicants could explore the following:

  • Sharing data with health professionals, co-workers, employers, family and more, but must allow the user to have full control to engender trust in the solution.
  • Exploring the use of solution focused and positive psychology techniques.
  • Utilising gamification and/or rewards to incentivise and motivate the user.
  • Connecting users to increase social interactions and reduce isolation, where appropriate.
  • Identify current resilient characteristics and behaviours, giving the users an opportunity to build on these and develop new strengths.

The successful applicant will potentially have the opportunity to trial their solution with AXA PPP healthcare or one of its corporate clients for a period of three months, before being commercialised more widely.

Additionally, all the shortlisted entries will be invited to have automatic inclusion in the AXA PPP Health Tech and You Awards, and the winner of this challenge will have the opportunity to be fast-tracked into the Health Tech Awards shortlist. This provides significant media coverage which is generated by AXA and its partners, 2020 Health and the Design Museum.  


About AXA PPP healthcare

AXA PPP healthcare is one of the largest and most experienced private medical insurance providers in the UK. We've been helping people to access the medical care they need for over 70 years and with around 1.8 million members we're leading the way to better health. Today it forms the UK healthcare arm of AXA and provides cover for medical and dental care for individuals and employers, and employee wellbeing, counselling, occupational health and rehabilitation services through its specialist Health Services division.

Last year AXA PPP Health Tech & You was launched, a joint initiative led by AXA PPP healthcare with the wellbeing think tank 2020health and the Design Museum. The initiative and associated Awards are designed to guide and grow the conversation about health tech, so that people everywhere can use technology to lead healthier lives and be more in control of their health and wellbeing.


Awards: 5 x £35,000

Contest Brief

Guidance for Applicants

Deadline: noon, Tuesday 27 October