HR, HR Updates

Mental Health & Well-Being at Work

The issue of mental health in our workplaces is still somewhat of a taboo subject. Yet with government estimates that every year one in six British workers are affected by conditions such as anxiety, depression and stress, this can have a significant impact on the overall well-being of your workforce. Millions of working days and billions of pounds are lost by British businesses every year through mental health issues. Last year there were 40,000 cases of self-reported stress, depression or anxiety caused or made worse by work in the East of England alone.

The responsibility of employers to support the health and well-being of their staff is covered by a whole raft of legislation including the Health & Safety Act at Work Act (1974), the Human Rights Act (1998), Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations (1999) and the Equality Act (2010),). But employers should see it not just at a corporate responsibility: promoting the mental health of employees leads to a healthy, happier and more productive workplace.

The Facts

Workplace stress can hit anyone at any level of the business and is not confined to particular sectors, jobs or industries, although the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) identifies that stress is more prevalent in public service industries, such as education, health and social care with the key triggers cited as workload pressures, including tight deadlines, too much responsibility and a lack of managerial support. Research by the mental health charity “Mind” into workplace stress found that:

  • More than one in five agreed that they had called in sick to avoid work when asked how workplace stress had affected them;
  • 14 per cent agreed that they had resigned and 42 per cent had considered resigning when asked how workplace stress had affected them;
  • 30 per cent of staff disagreed with the statement ‘I would feel able to talk openly with my line manager if I was feeling stressed’; and
  • 56 per cent of employers said they would like to do more to improve staff well-being but don’t feel they have the right training or guidance.

Workplace stress is only one aspect of mental health illness that may affect employees and can be a trigger for more serious illness, but it is likely to be most prevalent in the everyday workplace.

In Practice

Despite research and the legal requirements placed on employers, it is still widely agreed that employee well-being needs to be better understood and better managed across the board.

Whilst employees have a duty of care to themselves to look after their mental well-being, the stigma attached to mental health issues often means that they try to hide their feelings or fail to admit that they are suffering. Employers must play a key role in identifying symptoms and triggers and work towards alleviating pressures and supporting individuals at risk. It is important to monitor factors that might suggest there are problems with stress-related illness such as high rates of absenteeism, staff turnover, poor performance and even conflict between staff.

We mostly associate health & safety at work with accidents such as trips and slips and falling off ladders, but your Health & Safety policies also need to address the issue of stress, including, if appropriate, a stress management strategy. For best practice, you should consider undertaking a stress-related risk assessment if you expect your business to undergo some significant organisational change.

Promoting Mental Well-Being

As part of the management of mental well-being, employers should promote and encourage a culture which allows employees to feel comfortable about raising their concerns in confidence and educates the workforce as a whole as to the implications their behaviour may have on placing additional pressure on affected staff members: bullying, harassment or discrimination will not be tolerated.

Any steps you can take to help balance the demands placed on employees, such as flexible working, reduced hours or a change of duties, will help create a more positive working environment. Recognising issues early and providing appropriate support and information can help develop a culture where sickness absences, accidents and grievances are reduced and productivity, employee satisfaction and morale are greatly increased.

Not sure where to begin? Explore our ongoing Health & Safety Services and understand how Park City can support your business. 

Get in Touch

Name

Schedule A Call

Simply click below to schedule a call with a specialist to discuss your business requirements.

Saul HunnaballSaul Hunnaball
15:44 12 Aug 22
We have worked with Park City for our HR and Health and Safety support for many years now and have always received an excellent service.Carley is our Consultant and she is always so helpful, as are... her colleagues when she is unavailable.I would highly recommend Park City.read more
Lea CuttingLea Cutting
08:31 27 Jul 22
Park City have worked with us for many years, advising and guiding us regarding HR and Health & Safety, along with supplying valuable training.We work with many people in several areas of expertise,... Sara Godfrey, Jennie Galione, Ashley Williams, Sam Parcell, Stephanie Devans, Poppy Hayhoe.They build confidence within our company and are always available with support and advice.They provide a consistent, professional, hands-on service, second to none!Thank you from DH Industries Limited.read more
Vikki PringleVikki Pringle
11:12 20 Jul 22
The team at Park City offer us the right level of service needed to confidently run a small business. They keep us up to date with UK policy HR requirements, help us manage any staff changes or... issues and policy documents. The team are informed, friendly and remain professional in my experience.read more
Tracy MeadTracy Mead
07:12 20 Jul 22
The DS Group have been working with Park City now for a number of years and we have found their HR services to be invaluable. The service received is always to the highest professional standards and... they have assisted our business in becoming more efficient and effective in all HR matters.My consultant Sam Parcell is always on hand to help answering any questions quickly and professionally and she offers vital guidance, advice and support to us.We as a company will continue to use Park City’s services for many years to come and we cannot recommend them enough!Tracy Norton-Mead, Operations Director at the DS Group.read more
Katie HerbertKatie Herbert
13:35 07 Jul 22
We have worked with Park City for almost 10 years and have built up a great professional relationship over the years. The team are so friendly and helpful, and nothing is ever too much of an ask for... any of them. Our main HR contact is Carley, who is lovely, and she is very prompt in dealing with any queries we have regarding our 100+ staff. We would highly recommend their services for any local business.read more
js_loader

Suggested For You…

Google Rating
4.9
Based on 37 reviews
js_loader