Hays publish new research

Mental health may hold back career progression

Almost a quarter (24%) of those with a mental health condition do not believe they have the same career progression as other colleagues, according to new research from recruitment firm Hays.

In the survey of over 10,000 professionals and employers, 12% said they had felt this has led to their chances of being selected for a job being lowered.

The research also found:

  • Twenty-eight per cent of those under 25 years’ old said they experienced poor mental health, compared to 20% of those aged 55 and above
  • More women (27%) than men (18%) typically reported mental ill health
  • Of female professionals who are 25 years’ old and under, this was even more prevalent as 31% said they had, or have previously experienced, a mental health condition
  • Over half (53%) of employees said mental health support had become more important to them since lockdown

Commenting on the results

Kathryn Barnes, European Counsel, Globalization Partners said

“Mental health is a huge problem both in and outside of the office. Now is a good time for business leaders to put policies in place and to practice what they preach. It is promising to see more and more companies nominating health and wellbeing champions, trained by advisors and practitioners to help recognise and support employee wellbeing. There is a changing culture when it comes to mental health at work, but still more work needs to be done. Organisations should embrace and encourage positive mental health initiatives and be supporting employees as best they can – not just during our current situation, but at all times going forward.

Promoting face-to-face coffee breaks, socially distanced catch-ups and regular check-ins at work can go a long way towards promoting connectedness within any business setting. Companies who have regular video conferences are not only proven to be more productive, but help combat feelings of isolation, loneliness, and encourage open-conversations across the organisation.”

Agata Nowakowska, AVP EMEA, Skillsoft said

Nurturing the mental outlook and wellbeing of the remote workforce in the long term will require an appropriately structured approach that features new tools and processes that take into account both personal and organisational development needs.

This latest research shows employers will need to deploy tools that make it easy for workers to share what roles or skills they’d like to transition to in the future, identify competency gaps and acquire the new qualifications they’ll need.

Many of today’s learning platforms offer a wealth of modalities that make remote learning an enjoyable experience for people with a range of different learning styles. From bite sized learning that can be consumed during personal breaks, to video resources, and signposting to additional reading and learning they can tackle if they’re keen to further broaden their knowledge and expertise in a particular area.

Keeping people happy, productive and engaged will depend more than ever on nurturing every aspect of their professional and personal lives. Paramount to this will be nurturing their mental health and wellbeing.”

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