“Work related stress is a huge occupational problem facing Britain today, inflicting a heavy toll both in terms of financial cost and human suffering. Managers have a key role to play in reducing this toll- there is so much they can do that is simple and effective” –
Health and Safety Executive
Spot the Signs – Take Action – Increase Productivity – Show you care
Stress Costs you Money!
“It is essential for employers to consider the impact of stress on their employees, recognising that it is frequently difficult to respond to factors contributing to employee stress when the causes so often arise from a combination of work and home pressures”
Confederation of British Industry
HOW MUCH DOES STRESS COST YOUR BUSINESS?
“In financial terms the estimated cost of sickness absence to the UK as a whole is around £12 billion a year. Stress is the single largest cause of occupational ill health, accounting for around half of all days lost to work-related ill health in these sectors, much of it stress-related.”
Under UK law, employers have a legal duty to consider the health of their employees at work, and this includes mental health and wellbeing. A certain amount of stress is healthy, natural and is important for motivation as it helps us to achieve tasks and gain job satisfaction when work is stimulating and stretching.
However, problems occur when the pressures at work become excessive and employees find it hard to cope with demands placed upon them. If they are dealing with pressures at work plus stressful events in their personal lives e.g. family tensions or sickness, bereavement, money problems, moving to a new house, life changes etc – then they will be STRESSED!
A good manager should be able to ascertain if stress levels are personal or work related and employers can avoid litigation if there is evidence that the organisation has done everything it can to alleviate stress and carry out its duty of care.
- Explore the workplace culture
- Conduct stress risk assessments
- Ensure that managers are aware of their responsibilities
- Consider unusual patterns of absence
- Discuss stress risks at appraisals
- Making referrals where needed for individual support
- Conduct stress audits
- Provide additional supervision or technical support
- Provide training
- Consider reasonable adjustments to workloads or hours
- Implement the HSE Management Standards for stress
PREVENTION is CHEAPER THAN CURE!
If the organisation can demonstrate that it has a STRESS POLICY, STRESS AUDITS and TRAINING in place, it is harder for the employee to take his/her employers to court.
- You can significantly improve working life for 20% of your staff, with all the knock-on benefits of reduced absenteeism and lower turnover.
- For every £1 you invest in staff well-being, there’s a return of £3 in improved efficiency and productivity. Stress Management Society.
- National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) estimated that an average firm with 1,000 employees could save £250,000 a year by tackling the causes of work-related stress.