HSE Advises Workplace Mental Health Just As Important As Physical Health

Mental health in the workplace is becoming more widely understood and now the HSE has announced its spot checks will include questions on how businesses address work-related stress, it will be a top priority for employers.

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The HSE advises that mental health should be just as important as physical health in the workplace – risks to both must be equally considered.  Training employers to recognise and address issues is vital, and will help to support employees in coming forward and talking openly.

The HSE has produced guidance on how to engage employees in conversations about managing stress and wellbeing, and how to provide support. It includes:

👉 Having regular keep-in-touch meetings or calls with your workers means that problems will be less likely to escalate as you will catch them sooner.  If your staff know they have a regular slot of time where they can raise an issue or ask a question, they are more likely to engage and feel able to approach if problems arise.

👉 Talking openly with workers about the possibility of them becoming stressed or mentally unwell is important.  Being transparent and honest helps us all to feel less alone and able to ask for help. 

👉 Involving workers in completing stress risk assessments can help them identify potential problems and solutions, which they may not have put a name to otherwise. 

👉 Keeping workers updated on what is happening helps them to feel involved and reassured.  Change can be a huge stressor for many of us, but seeing the road ahead reduces the worry of the unknown - by making sure communication is open and clear, employers and employees can move forward together.

👉 Talking to people about fatigue and making sure they take regular breaks will reaffirm that their health is the priority.  Encouraging them to take their annual leave is important and setting working times makes sure people aren’t working too long.


Not sure where to start in your workplace?  Our Mental Health in the Workplace two-day course can help you get on track with understanding and supporting your staff.  On successful completion, participants receive a CPD certified qualification too, which is valid for three years.

Our course includes:

🔎 Understanding mental health and related health problems.

🔎 Recognising the signs and symptoms of anxiety, phobias, depression, bipolar and schizophrenia.

🔎 Legislation and your responsibilities in the workplace under mental health.

🔎 How to promote a healthy workplace.

🔎 Why mental health is not discussed at work.

🔎 How to recognise a problem and support an employee with mental health related problems

🔎 The impact on the workplace of unidentified mental health problems.

🔎 How to implement an action plan to promote the recovery of mental ill health

If you would like to find out more, or wish to book, please email abarrett@whatnosafety.co.uk or call 01722 326 390.

We also have access to many e-learning courses, including Mental Health training.  Find out more here: https://www.whatnosafety.co.uk/health-and-safety-e-learning