Wellbeing prioritised

One in five UK businesses to re-evaluate mental health and wellbeing policies

UK businesses are committing greater efforts and finances to the provision of mental health support in the workplace in response to Covid and “The Great Resignation”. A new survey of 1,000 key decision makers in business revealed what companies are doing in order to combat the mental health crisis in the UK. Over one in five (21 per cent) of business leaders state they are willing to re-evaluate their mental health policies, offering reassurance that steps are being taken in the right direction to help staff.

In response to these findings, FutureLearn is providing support to these businesses and HR professionals who want to improve workplace mental health training, including its COVID-19: Psychological First Aid course, and encouraging employers to consider implementing further policies.

Employees returning to the office will be faced with a ‘new normal,’ causing many to be apprehensive around how the lifted restrictions and adjusted workspaces might affect them. FutureLearn’s top rated short course has been designed to empower businesses with the skills to understand the importance of psychological first aid and to help implement changes to support both businesses and employees.

Currently, there are no legal requirements for allocated psychological first aiders compared to the requirement for physical first aiders or fire marshals – despite being a business essential. The trauma felt from the pandemic has seen businesses proactively improve their mental health support with an increase of 10 per cent of businesses that now have support in place. This comes after 7 in 10 (68 per cent) businesses admitted to not having mental health support for their staff pre-pandemic, with this number decreasing to 58 per cent post-pandemic. With over a tenth (12 per cent) of employees revealing they have left their job citing mental health as one of the main reasons for leaving, it is clear just how important mental health policies such as counselling, training and psychological first aiders are.

Of the businesses who have made changes to their policies since the pandemic, over 2 in 5 (42 per cent) have already implemented online counselling for employees and 34 per cent have already invested in mental health first aiders.

FutureLearn wants to encourage businesses and their employees to make full use of this free online learning course Psychological First Aid course, created and sponsored by the UK Health Security Agency (an executive agency of the UK Government Department of Health and Social Care). The course includes training on how to handle mental health challenges in the workplace, as well as specific steps on how to handle mental health as a result of COVID-19, it is suggested that the course takes approximately one hour each week for three weeks to complete but the course can be completed at a learner’s own pace meaning businesses could train people up in just three hours.

“We commissioned this survey to reinforce the importance of mental wellbeing in the workplace,” notes Yvonne Chien, chief growth officer at FutureLearn. “We’ve seen how the past 18 months have impacted mental health. This national shift has only strengthened our belief in the significance of businesses having access to the right support. Our own focus on mental health at FutureLearn is continuously developing as we learn more about our employee needs through our trained mental health champions, like Conrad Vivers. We hope that we will be joined by other businesses in showing that such policies are not just suggestions on paper but provide real solutions that are beneficial for all.”

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More