The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a mental health crisis, and left employers worldwide scrambling for solutions.
While there was some progress, the fact that burnout reached record levels in 2022 proves that more needs to be done. This is especially true as stress is a major cause of the ‘Great Resignation’ and is impacting productivity and business bottom lines.
A survey of 850 HR decision makers by Unmind found that 96% thought work should be positive for mental health, but only 63% currently have a wellbeing strategy with clear goals in place.
Thankfully, HR leaders are focused on making 2023 the year they focus on mental health and wellbeing as a business priority.
This links with HR becoming more important in driving business strategy (94%), and the fact that employees expect more around wellbeing from companies (65%).
2023: The year of wellbeing
Talking about the research Unmind CEO and co-founder Dr Nick Taylor shares with UNLEASH: “The research highlighted a huge appetite among business leaders to support their people through these challenging times.”
“But it also revealed some eye-opening disconnects” – the question is how does HR fill the gap and improve mental health provisions this year?
Taylor adds: “We recommend taking a whole-person, whole-organisation approach. Workplace wellbeing solutions need to be grounded in science and built for specific challenges of business.”
While 94% HR leaders surveyed agree on the need for scientifically-based wellbeing tools, currently just 5% of tools fit the bill. So Unmind recommends that HR buyers start asking vendors tough questions and asking them to clearly share the science and evidence that backs up their technology.
HR also needs to focus in on “data and measurement so you can understand workplace wellbeing and demonstrate the impact of your initiatives”, according to Taylor.
However, this requires “empowering leaders and managers with the skills and confidence they need to create environments that foster employee wellbeing.”
As a result, organizations need to get serious about supporting and training managers better around wellbeing. The current barriers are budget (50%), managers being time poor (44%) and the tech and providers being too expensive (42%).
In 2023, it is high time that employers make the invest, and they will get the pay back in empowered managers and teams who are productive, motivated and engaged.
The International Festival of HR is back! Discover amazing speakers at UNLEASH America on 26-27 April 2023.
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