Prioritising Employee Wellbeing

A Comprehensive Guide to Enhancing Mental Health in Your Workplace

In the fast-paced world of business, prioritising mental health is no longer a mere sentiment; it’s a critical aspect of maintaining a thriving workforce.

Recent statistics reveal that mental health issues affect one in six British workers, leading to increased sickness absences and costing UK employers between £33 billion and £44 billion annually.

Recognising the urgency of this matter, the UK Government commissioned an independent review named “Thriving at Work,” spearheaded by Lord Dennis Stevenson and Paul Farmer, Chief Executive of Mind.

The result is the Thriving at Work Mental Health Standards, consisting of six core standards derived from best practices and available evidence. The full report can be accessed here.

To assist your business in taking the first steps towards improving employees’ mental health, let’s delve into Core Standard One: Creating a Mental Health at Work Plan.

Core Standard One: Create a mental health at-work plan

Develop, implement, and communicate a mental health at work plan that fosters good mental health for all staff and promotes an open organisational culture.

Part 1: Promoting employee wellbeing

  1. Get senior leaders on board

    • Speak out about mental health
    • Support campaigns for healthy work hours and lunch breaks

  2. Raise awareness of mental health

    • Embed mental health in induction and training
    • Celebrate key dates in the mental health calendar
    • Run internal communication campaigns
    • Recruit Mental Health Champions
  • Involve staff in dialogue and decision-making

    • Use staff surveys, focus groups, and forums
    • Establish engagement steering groups
    • Conduct regular performance review meetings

  • Promote a healthy work/life balance

    • Encourage sensible working hours
    • Advocate for full lunch breaks and rest periods
    • Discourage weekend work, especially from home

  • Provide opportunities for learning and development

    • Offer coaching, training, and job-shadowing

  • Offer positive working relationships and social connections

    • Promote teamwork and collaboration
    • Enforce policies on bullying and harassment
    • Encourage exercise and social events
    • Implement mentoring and buddy schemes

Part 2: Tackling the work-related causes of mental health problems

  1. Routinely take stock

    • Understand factors affecting mental wellbeing
    • Assess the impact of current support approaches
    • Plan improvements and participate in Mind’s Workplace Wellbeing Index

  2. Upskill line managers

    • Provide mental health and stress management training
    • Establish clear guidelines for managing mental health issues
    • Encourage positive manager behaviour

  3. Regular one-to-ones

    • Support regular check-ins on mental wellbeing
    • Incorporate mental health discussions in appraisals and supervision
    • Maintain clear communication with all staff, especially those working in isolation

  4. The physical work environment

    • Consult employees on improving the work environment
    • Provide suitable spaces for focused work
    • Address noise levels through agreements on respectful behaviour

Part 3: Supporting staff experiencing a mental health problem

  • Signal support for staff experiencing mental health problems
  • Detail available support, including medical services, peer support groups, flexible working options, internal networks, and Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs)

  • We can help you create your mental health plan

Feeling overwhelmed? We understand. Contact us today, and let’s work together to create a tailored mental health plan for your business, ensuring a positive change and proactive management of mental health challenges.

Looking for HR advice or a second opinion?

Use the link below or scan the QR code to get in touch, book a FREE 30-minute consultation with Helen our HR Guru, and more!


#MentalHealthMatters #WorkplaceWellbeing #EmployeeEngagement #WellnessAtWork #ThrivingTogether

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