Improvements in Employee Mental Health Since Start of the Pandemic

We’re delighted to report that recent research from Acas highlights a general improvement in workplace mental health since the start of the pandemic.


Over a third of businesses have seen improvements

Carried out by YouGov on behalf of Acas, the study was aimed at UK businesses and asked whether they had seen a change to employee mental health and wellbeing support within their organisation since the COVID-19 pandemic began.

The results were very encouraging, as 36% of businesses said that employee mental health support had improved over the last 18 months. Meanwhile, 50% said it had remained the same, with 9% saying it had got worse and 6% being unsure. Whilst the overall figure is positive, this research also shows that further work is required across every sector.


Why mental health matters

Employee mental health and wellbeing is crucial not only for individuals but also the companies that employ them. Feeling supported in a role leads to reduced absenteeism, higher productivity, an increase in two-way communication and a greater sense of workplace morale.

When a member of staff knows that they can talk to their line manager or HR department about any issues, the bond between employee and employer is strengthened significantly. This in turn facilitates a healthier and happier work environment where everyone is supported both individually and as part of the wider workplace culture.


Ways to offer mental health support

There’s a variety of methods that your business can easily put in place to support the mental health and wellbeing of its workforce, such as:

  • Employees should feel confident in approaching their employer when they have a question, suggestion or problem. You have the power to make this happen.
  • A versatile system needs to be in place that allows staff to raise concerns via email, phone call, video meetings, instant message and face to face. A safe and private setting should be offered to those who wish to talk confidentially in person about their wellbeing requirements.
  • Supervisors, line managers and business owners should keep in regular contact with their employees and actively discuss factors such as workloads, constraints and potential problems that could affect health and morale.
  • The senior management team must constantly be able to see the bigger picture. For instance, absenteeism, hardware issues, supply chain delays and other negative factors can have a serious impact on an individual’s ability to cope. By staying in the loop and nipping problems in the bud, you can prevent your employees’ mental wellbeing from slipping.
  • Always lead by example – look after your own mental health whilst nurturing a culture of open discussion and mutual support.


Mental health resources for businesses

There are many organisations and charities that support workplace wellbeing through talks, workshops and online resources. Excellent examples are Mind, which offers a range of training and consultancy. Meanwhile, the Mental Health Foundation has put together an employer checklist for creating mentally healthy workplaces.

In addition, the CIPD has a number of mental health factsheets that are extremely insightful and free to download. These cover everything from the Equality Act 2010 to making mental health a part of wider wellbeing at work.


Get in touch

We’re here to provide expert advice on how to support employee mental health and keep your day-to-day operations running smoothly. For tailored guidance and support, please call your closest branch or get in touch through our contact form.

Posted: Sat 18 Sep 2021
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