Wellbeing app launched by Edinburgh tech firm helping NHS workers on coronavirus frontline

A wellbeing app launched by an Edinburgh technology start-up is being used by doctors and other NHS frontline workers tackling the pandemic.

Dr Simon Edgar of NHS Lothian and Trickle CEO Paul Reid. Picture: Stewart Attwood

The “How was your day?” app has been rolled out by workplace engagement specialist Trickle and is the result of a collaborative project part-funded by Scotland’s Chief Scientist Office.

It is being run during its pilot phase in conjunction with NHS Education for Scotland, NHS Lothian, NHS Tayside, the University of Aberdeen and the University of St Andrews.

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The launch comes as Trickle, which was founded in 2018, said it was on track to further build on a strong year of growth.

The firm was set up by Paul Reid, who previously founded geospatial tech specialist Sigma Seven which was subsequently acquired by FTSE 100 outsourcing giant Capita in 2015.

Trickle has quadrupled its headcount to 16 over the past 12 months and now has a sales team in place to target the corporate and public sectors across the rest of the UK.

Recent customer wins include Scottish transport operator FirstGroup. Other client wins during 2020 include West Dunbartonshire Council, Aberdeenshire Council, the Scottish Legal Complaints Commission and Food Standards Scotland.

The company’s new hires over the past year covered its customer wellbeing team, marketing, sales and tech roles, while Reid plans more recruits this year when the business embarks on its next external investment round. A number of angel investors who had previously backed Sigma Seven supported Trickle in its most recent round, a £1 million seed funding led by Techstart Ventures.

Reid, who is the firm’s chief executive, said: “Trickle came through the Scottish Government’s CivTech digital accelerator programme, so we’ve been closely aligned with the public sector in Scotland since our early days.

“While the last year has seen us expand our activities with the Scottish Government and NHS Scotland, particularly in light of challenges around the coronavirus pandemic, we’re also been rapidly growing the corporate sector side of the business and are increasingly engaging with organisations across the UK.”

He added: “This year’s focus is on sales growth and scaling up the business, underpinned by the further development of our product to ensure it’s even better at supporting our clients around positive workplace engagement and wellbeing.

“2020 saw monumental and unanticipated changes to the work dynamic and so it’s never been more important for organisations to focus on meaningful employee engagement, wellbeing, and mental health as they strive to become more people-centric.

“What we know is that the right kind of digital tools can help to address these pressing areas, resulting in greater happiness, productivity and staff retention.”

Simon Edgar, director for medical education at NHS Lothian, said: “The most joyful and engaged healthcare staff feel both physically and psychologically safe, appreciate the meaning and purpose of their work and perceive their work life to be fair and equitable.

“This fantastic enhancement to the Trickle platform will give us real time data and a direct connection to the voice of our doctors in training to help us create positive change together.”

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