The recent pandemic has affected employee health and wellbeing in many different ways. Right from burnout issues to causing stress due to social isolation, financial crunches, and multiple responsibilities, employee mental health has been undeniably impaired.
According to a CDC study, almost 40% of employees said their jobs were very stressful, with about 25% revealing that their jobs were their key stress factors. Another study revealed that almost 46% of employees suffered from mental wellbeing issues during the pandemic.
In addition to affecting physical and mental health, the stress has impacted their workplace productivity, reflecting high absenteeism and reduced business growth. Also, poor health and wellbeing have led to increased healthcare costs and unwanted employee turnover, costing organizations a lot than anticipated.
And so, employers are looking forward to addressing employee mental health issues by implementing best-suited workplace wellness programs and other measures.
Here are a few very simple ways by which employers can improve employee mental wellbeing.
Encourage Open Discussions
In an era when mental illnesses are still considered a social stigma, employers must encourage their workforce to open up about their health and wellbeing concerns. Allowing them to discuss honestly in a workplace culture where mental illnesses are no longer taboo is the first step to progress.
Help with the De-stressing Process
A workplace with stringent dictums can add to the mental wellbeing issues of many workers. Employers must create a healthy workplace culture that makes the workforce feel comfortable at the workplace and with their colleagues. Allow frequent refreshment breaks, small walks with co-workers, stretch breaks, and other refreshing ways to get the employees away from their desks for a few minutes. Encourage socially healthy and informal connections at the workplace for the workforce to ease their workload and reduce stress.
Offer Mental Health Resources
Since employee health and wellbeing are a priority, many wellness vendors and health organizations are offering countless mental wellbeing resources. FreeWellnessPlatform.com has partnered with SelfHelpWorks to offer holistic wellness programs that are a blend of assessments, videos, quizzes, and more. These programs focus on improving resilience and improving emotional wellbeing. Employers can also offer additional educational resources and tools to help employees overcome stress and feel good about their holistic wellbeing.
Offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Simply put, employee assistance programs or EAPs are corporate initiatives that assist employees with their personal and wellbeing concerns. EAPs include assessments, counseling sessions, referrals, and overall guidance to the employees. Employees can openly discuss their financial, social, personal relationships, and other stressful issues with the EAP counselors to seek guidance and outline an actionable plan. The follow-up services can help in analyzing progress and making the needed changes to address other issues.
Build a Fun, Healthy, and Positive Workplace Culture
The workplace culture plays a key role in employee productivity, turnover, and overall workplace wellbeing. The management and leaders at the organization can build a healthy and positive work environment in many ways. While making changes to the top-down policy can be very impactful, employers can also change the working policies, allow flexible working hours, provide access to follow healthy lifestyle habits, and more, to reduce employee stress.
Apart from building a healthy workplace culture, employers must also build trust with their employees. They must understand the values and beliefs of their workforce to demonstrate their support and care. Also, regular communication and encouraging activities for the workforce and their families can boost employer-employee cooperation, thus influencing employee mental health.
Apart from building a healthy workplace culture, employers must also build trust with their employees. They must understand the values and beliefs of their workforce to demonstrate their support and care. Also, regular communication and encouraging activities for the workforce and their families can boost employer-employee cooperation, improving social wellbeing.