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Important ways to address employees’ mental health and wellbeing issues

The world is currently at a stage of recovery from COVID-19. The pandemic has had disastrous consequences over our lives at several levels.
It was back in December 2020 that over 50% of UKs population used to be anxious regarding the direction that the pandemic had taken. In merely a couple of weeks’ time, the effect of the pandemic had been disastrous over our lives.
It was at the same time when over 20% of the nation’s population reported feelings of hopelessness regarding the pandemic. These two factors are sufficient to specify why the employers from across the UK need to put their proactive focus towards ensuring that their employees’ mental well-being does not take a toll. Let us take a look at a few of the top ways to look after your employees’ mental wellbeing.


1. Hybrid working


It was last March when the employees were required to work from home. The venture was vastly met with a mixed response. A few of the points of concern that arose at such a time was whether the employees would cope up with working from home. Would they not get bored? Would they respond positively to a change in the environment? Or, would they cherish these moments, as they would not be required to spend money commuting five days a week?
Employees’ opinion does not matter over the perspective, but several firms have confirmed that there occurred drastic changes in employees’ mental health levels across the lockdown period.
As per the findings of a research, over 75% of employees from across the UK are happier working from home. The study got in touch with over 2000 of employees in the UK and came to discover that working from home rendered a positive impact over employees’ mental health in over 50% of cases.
Through the current times, the government wants the employees to return to office. So, it becomes important for the employees to adjust afresh to the rigors of the workplace. In many cases, employees returning to the workplace had to put up with some difficulties as they were unsure regarding the workplace culture.
Hence when employees return to the workplace, it is important to ensure that that the company’s culture and structure is very transparent for them. Overall, professionals across the UK desire to have higher degrees of flexibility and freedom in their work culture. This will support their mental well being.


2. Regular check-ins


Interacting with your employees is activity that may seem to deliver only a limited number of benefits at the first look. But the activity is more beneficial than it seems.
When you interact with the employees regarding any workplace related concerns, it boosts their confidence levels. Another fine idea that works in this regard is to make mental health resources available for your employees at the workplace. So, if your employees do not feel comfortable regarding discussing such matters with you, they can access help by themselves.
Check-ins always helps employers support their teams. Managers can then be sure regarding the challenges faced by their employees. This helps them with the identification of the resources that bring success to the organization. The employees feel confident to reach out to the managers with any concerns or questions that they have in mind.
Since managers cannot be sure at all times regarding what their employees are going through, it is best that the employees get some time out.
When an employee suffers from a mental health related issue, he accesses protection under the Equality Act. This implies that the employee can request a change in working hours, provisions to work from home or a change of tasks.


3. Appraisal and performance management


Across the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has been detrimental to wellbeing and mental health. Even following the commencement of the pandemic, we cannot be sure if the mental health levels are going to improve.
In such circumstances, appraisals and performance management deliver an opportunity for the employees to reward and recognize the employees who yield valuable work. The employees, in the same coin, will feel valued for the work they put in.
When rewarding the employees, the employers can initiate a discussion on mental health issues related to the workplace. Such activities induce employee wellbeing and engagement.

Conclusion

Over the long term, it becomes important for employers to offer ongoing counsel, support and training to their employees regarding issues such as mental health and wellbeing. The first step towards the same is an honest dialogue with the employees. Then a mental health and wellbeing program can be put in place. This will support the employees’ requirements.
When an employer understands his employees’ needs, adjustments can be introduced in their work environment. Employers should express, both, by their words and actions that their employees are valuable for them. This will boost the employee productivity.
The team members should be assured that their health comes first. They should enjoy flexibility in their work environment.

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