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Send To CEO #6: Championing Mental Health

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What is your most costly safety issue facing businesses at the moment? Compensation? Business disruption costs? Asset failures?

There is one safety issue which is currently costing Australian workplaces approximately $10.9 billion every year. 

Mental health.

It’s easy for a business to choose to focus on physical safety. Any issues are much more visible in the workplace. The solutions are much more prescriptive. And best practice is legislated. But physical safety is only one half of the coin.

The mental health of your workforce is the other side.

45% of people will experience a mental health issue at some point in their life.

Over 1 in 5 Australian employees have taken time off work in the past year due to feeling mentally unwell.

Mental health is an enormous challenge for our society and our workforces. With almost half of people experiencing a mental health issue in their lifetime, this is a challenge which many in your workforce are likely facing right now. 

However, when a safe and supportive environment is created, this can result in significant increases in productivity throughout a workforce, decreases in absenteeism and presenteeism, and the creation of a workforce that is motivated and proactive. 

But, you may ask, why is an HSEQ software company talking to me about mental health?

If you’re looking to better manage your mental health, the key may lie with your HSEQ team. 

There are a few significant influences on a mentally healthy workforce. Some of these include:

  • Providing employees with access to resources and services to support and improve their mental health
  • Decreasing workplace stress through safe work environments and processes
  • Ensuring that employees have sufficient breaks to maintain a balance between their work and personal life
  • Upskilling workforces with mental health training to help employees better manage their own mental health challenges and also support others in the workplace

And an integrated, organisation-wide focus on HSEQ can help support your workforce in each of these areas. From easy access to company health information through the intranet and tracking time on site through to simply rolling out mental health training for your workforce to help them be on the lookout for any workmates who might be struggling and might need a chat.

It’s easy to stay focused on physical health – which definitely plays an important role in ensuring your workforces return home safely at the end of the day. But to ensure your workforce is operating at its peak, they need to be mentally healthy as well.

What could you change to increase the mental health of your workforce?

Want a hand to ensure your HSEQ systems are set up to best support the mental health of your workforce? Book in some time with us to have a chat.


Having a tough time and need someone to talk to right now? Call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit lifeline.com.au. Services are confidential and available 24/7.