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Good business decisions are often driven by return on investment, but it’s not a phrase we always associate with mental health in the workplace.
This could be a missed opportunity.
Building resilient teams and preventing mental health problems can be helped by promoting workplace wellbeing and ensuring line-managers have the skills and resources to support employees.
Timely and tailored support should be available when employees need it, which can minimise the negative impact poor mental health has on the business as a whole, individual employees and the teams they work with.
Compelling business case
The business case is compelling. The Mental Health Foundation says addressing wellbeing at work increases productivity by as much as 12%.
Deloitte estimates that every £1 employers invest in mental health will now deliver a return of £5 and this is likely to rise.
The Lancet had similar findings and also found investing in managers delivered even greater benefits of almost £10 for every pound spent on mental health training.
Bupa data confirms the benefits of investing in early interventions for mental wellbeing in the workplace.
Having an employee assistance programme (EAP) reduces mental health claims by 25%.
Depending on the condition and type of support employees access, in 56% of cases there is no need for a claim.
Face-to-face counselling and therapy can be provided if needed, but many employees prefer the ease and anonymity of online and digital interventions.
A 2022 review of the evidence found digital and online technologies are “capable of producing meaningful changes in the lives of individuals struggling with various mental and behavioural health concerns”.
Another review pointed out that Internet-based interventions, blended-care models, and stepped-care models provide mental health services “in a less stigmatising and easily accessible and flexible manner”.
It also warned that given the strong links between emotional and physical health, failing to provide effective mental health support “has serious ramifications”.
Dr Robin Clark, Medical Director of Bupa UK, says: “Investing in workplace wellbeing is not only the right thing to do ethically, it is also the right thing to do for talent retention and productivity.”
For resources and guides on how to promote mental health in the workplace, take a look at the full article here.
This article has been abbreviated by Health & Protection.