Port of Tyne Promotes Health & Well-being with App Lockdown Challenge

An 'out of the box' approach to connect, communicate and engage with employees whilst raising money for charity during Covid-19.

Without much warning we all entered into an era where virtual interactions have been most important.  We want to celebrate our client, the Port of Tyne, who have raised the bar with their ‘out of the box’ thinking on how to ensure their teams stay happy and engaged during challenging times. The Port of Tyne have introduced a Lockdown Challenge in their employee app, 'Portall', to both raise the spirits of employees and raise money for a good cause. 

Take a look below at what they’ve done, and if you like it why not do something similar in your employee app?

Port of Tyne Lockdown challenge 3

The Port of Tyne’s Lockdown Challenge is a virtual triathlon from Newcastle to Australia. Employees are encouraged to use their daily lockdown exercise time to participate, by either running, cycling or walking, then recording the total amount of miles travelled each day by them and their families.

After their daily exercise, they can access the Portall app and record their progress on an embedded web form. The app admins then download a daily report and add up the totals from everyone’s submissions. This allows them to add a daily update to show everyone the total distance travelled so far from Newcastle in the UK, with the target being 10,437 miles to Newcastle in Australia! The daily updates are a great way to visualise just how much effort everyone is putting into the challenge. At the time of writing, they’ve already virtually reached Yemen!


They’re also using Thrive’s User Generated Content feature to have a Lockdown Challenge gallery, for employees to upload photos of themselves and their families participating in the challenge. This is a great idea so that everyone can see their colleagues participating, and they can comment on each other’s posts to stay in touch during the lockdown. Some have been sharing pictures from their walks, while others have been sharing route maps and achievement screenshots from their fitness apps. All of these posts come together to show everyone that even during the lockdown they’re still together and still a team.

As well as for camaraderie and raising spirits, the Port of Tyne are also running their Lockdown Challenge as a way to raise money for NHS Charities, to support the Covid-19 NHS appeal – a fantastic and worthy cause in the midst of current events. They’ve included the link to their JustGiving page in the Lockdown Challenge section of the app, so that their employees can see how much has been raised so far and so they can take the link and share it on their own social media channels and with family and friends.

Port of Tyne lockdown challenge 4

We love it when we see our customers doing exciting and engaging things with their apps, so we wanted to share this amazing example of how the Port of Tyne are making the most of their employee app. It’s in this kind of activity that an app really shines in comparison to an intranet or other more traditional internal communications channels. Combining the ability for people to update their mileage progress and share their challenges with colleagues by posting photos, along with the ability for the Port of Tyne to post updates quickly and easily to encourage everyone to keep going, is a fantastic way to approach the problem of employees feeling disconnected during the lockdown.

If you’re a current Thrive customer, why not take this opportunity to do something similar with your app? Raise your employees’ spirits and raise some money for a worthy cause at the same time! Get in touch with your Client Success Manager right now who'll be happy to help you get your webform set up to allow employees to update their progress, and give you advice on the best way to manage this in your app daily.

If you’re not a Thrive customer, this is a perfect example of the kind of dynamic and exciting internal comms content an employee app allows you to create. It’s only really possible to pull off this Lockdown Challenge because the employees can go on their run, walk or cycle and they can bring their mobile phone and app with them. They can easily snap some pictures and upload them there and then, and they can take their phone out of their pocket as soon as they’re home to update their progress with how many miles they’ve travelled. No sitting down at a desk and logging in to an intranet – it works so well because it’s fast and it’s instant!

If you’d like to talk to us about setting up an app for your own business, get in touch with us today.