05 October 2018
Last week saw the launch of a new guide aimed at assisting and supporting those who battle mental health issues in the workplace. The guide has been compiled by the CIPD, the UK’s leading professional body for HR and people development, and Mind, the longstanding mental health charity.
CIPD’s recent ‘Health and Well-Being at Work’ report, produced in partnership with Simplyhealth, showed increases in work-related stress and mental health. 37% of the organisations surveyed reported that stress-related absence has increased, and 55% (up from 41% in 2016) reported that common mental health conditions have increased too. The guidance is seen as a direct response to both this report and further CIPD research which found that less than one in three organisations (32%) adequately train line managers to support staff with symptoms related to poor mental health.
The guide is not exclusive and the CIPD hope it can be used as both an outline but also worked into existing HR policies and practices. Containing useful definitions, potential triggers/indicators of poor mental health, informative case studies and step by step managerial guidance, Mind have reported that it hopes the guide will encourage managers to start taking “an active role in helping us keep well and supporting us when needed.”
The CIPD believe that a prominent stigma and misunderstanding about mental health in society and the workplace remains, stating that “Mental health is still the elephant in the room in most workplaces, and a culture of silence can have a damaging impact on a business as well as individuals”. They believe this guide will go some way to assisting and supporting managers who lack confidence when having sensitive conversations with their own members of staff. It’s thought that better dialogue and communication will be of assistance to some 60% (of a recent Mind Survey of over 44,000 employees) who felt that their manager would not be able to spot the signs that they were struggling with poor mental health.