According to recent research from the UK, around 51% of employees feel pressure to “put on a brave face at work”. Very few employees (16%) said they felt their mental health was well supported at work, despite 81% wanting their employers to give them help with their mental wellbeing.
In Australia, work-related mental health conditions (also known as psychological injuries) have become a major concern in workplaces due to the negative impact on individual employees, and the costs associated with the long periods away from work that are typical of these claims.
According to SafeWork, each year:
- 7,200 Australians are compensated for work-related mental health conditions, equating to around 6% of workers’ compensation claims
- Approximately $543 million is paid in workers’ compensation for work-related mental health conditions
Work-related mental-health conditions have a number of causes, ranging across:
- High job demand
- Low job demand
- Poor support
- Poor workplace relationships
- Low role clarity
- Poor organisational change management
- Poor organisational justice
- Poor environmental conditions
- Remote or isolated work, and
- Violent or traumatic events
It’s for this reason that more and more businesses are introducing Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) in the workplace. EAPs are designed to enhance the emotional, psychological and general wellbeing of employees and their immediate family members, enabling early detection, identification and resolution of work and personal problems. EAPs are a great way to pre-empt the harmful effects of unaddressed staff mental health issues on your business.
Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) allow employers to support their employees – and often their employees’ families – through confidential counselling sessions with registered psychologists. They help employees to deal with work-related and personal issues that may affect workplace attitudes, performance and productivity.
Access to an EAP provides a safe, confidential environment to understand and resolve issues that might arise at work. Employees can gain invaluable coping skills and strategies.
By introducing an EAP in your workplace, you’ll immediately begin to notice:
- Improved emotional wellbeing among employees
- Increased work morale and motivation
- Better work-life balance
- Less absenteeism
- Better working relationships
- Improved productivity
EAPs are well worth introducing in the workplace, with the benefits far outweighing the expenditure. If you would like further information on implementing an EAP, have a chat to the friendly and knowledgeable team at HR Dept.