Absences relating to mental health have become increasingly common in the workplace in recent years, with more and more employees taking time off work due to stress, anxiety, and other mental health issues. According to a study conducted by the Mental Health Foundation, over a third of all sick days taken are related to mental health problems. This is a concerning trend for both employees and employers.
For employees, mental health issues can be incapacitating, affecting their ability to work as well as socialise, and carry out standard day-to-day activities. For employers, mental health-related absences can be expensive and disruptive, impacting productivity and morale within the workplace when the workloads of others increase to support the absence.
So, what can employers do to improve the mental health of their employees and reduce the number of mental health-related absences?
Here are some steps you can take:
Create a positive work environment with a focus on wellbeing
One of the most important things you can do as an employer is to create a positive work environment that supports the mental health and wellbeing of your employees. This can include things like providing a comfortable and well-lit workspace, offering flexible working arrangements, and promoting a culture of open communication and collaboration.
Provide mental health support
Another important step is to provide mental health support to your employees. This can include access to counselling services, mental health training, and resources such as self-help materials and online support groups. By providing these resources, you can help employees manage their mental health and prevent issues from escalating to a point where they are unable to attend work.
Encouraging self-care among your employees is another important step you can take. This can include promoting healthy habits such as regular exercise, healthy eating, and getting enough sleep. Additionally, offering wellness programs such as yoga classes, meditation sessions, and mindfulness training can also be beneficial.
Promote work-life balance
Finally, promoting work-life balance is essential for maintaining good mental health. Encouraging employees to take breaks, offering flexible working arrangements, and discouraging working overtime or taking work home can all help employees achieve a healthy balance between work and their personal lives.
In conclusion, mental health-related absences are a growing concern for employers. However, by creating a positive work environment, providing mental health support, encouraging self-care, and promoting work-life balance, employers can take steps to improve the mental health of their employees and reduce the number of mental health-related absences.
If you have any questions or need advice on mental health or managing absences please don’t hesitate to get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org.