Written by qualified Psychologist Tess Howells. Tess has partnered with eCompliance Training to create a series of online courses focusing on Mental Health in the Workplace.
Problem 1: Loss of Productivity
Workers who are stressed, anxious or depressed have dif culty concentrating on tasks, are often sleep-deprived and low in motivation. The impact of depression alone in the Australian workplace leads to:
- Over six million working days lost each year
- Three to four days off work per month for eachperson suffering depression
- 12 million days of reduced productivity each year through absenteeism or presenteeism (being present at work, but not functioning well)
Early identification and intervention of problems is important. Managers need to be properly trained to recognise mental health issues and to know what steps to take next.
Problem 2: Lack of Skills to Identify and Manage Mental Health Problems
Many Managers report feeling uncomfortable about talking with employees about mental health issues and are sometimes concerned that:
- They will offend the employee
- They will breach confidentiality
- They will make vulnerable people feel worse
Creating a workplace culture that encourages open discussion of mental illness is an important first step
Problem 3: Loss of Talent; Recruitment & Retraining Costs
Valued employees these days are seeking work life balance and will leave organisations which they feel do not support their healthy lifestyles. In the current economic climate, organisations need the best human capital to gain the edge on their competitors. In addition, customers increasingly prefer to support business that show they care about their employees.
Talent loss, retraining and recruitment costs place a significant burden on organisational resources and performance. Providing the right support services for employees experiencing mental health and workplace performance issues is therefore essential.