HR Tips & Answers

Mentally healthy workplaces

Did you know that employees spend approximately one third of their life at work, with at least one in five (20%) of employees experiencing a common mental illness at some time in the past 12 months?  So it’s important that employers play a role in protecting, improving, and supporting mental health of their employees.

To create a mentally healthy environment, businesses can address a variety of workplace considerations commencing with implementing strategies and encouraging workers in this area.


  • Your business can create a culture in the workplace whereby your employees feel safe to discuss and understand that support is available for mental health concerns.  This can be through open dialogue and referring to support services, such as an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or other support services.


  • Monitor the wellbeing of your employees.  Connect with them, asking how they feel and casual conversations using active listening and empathy, on a regular basis
  • If you identify a change in an employee’s behaviour such as isolating or not communicating, or a change in work habits, then engage with them in a confidential one-on-one conversation or meeting in an attempt to help them to open up and to seek support.


  • Create a safe space for your employees to go to for some quiet time to think, meditate, have a snack or a break.


  • Get leadership to commit to invest in the mental health of its workforce.  This needs to start with the leaders themselves showing that they are involved in open conversations and strategies supporting mental health initiatives.


  • Encourage your  employees to switch off from technology, or tools where it is safe to do so; to step away from time to time to help them refresh, recharge and refocus.


  • Encourage your employees to have good sleeping and eating habits.  This can be as simple as making sure that they are not working excessive overtime or not taking their allocated breaks.  If both of these are well managed, studies have proven that they can reduce depression and increase cognitive function.


A mentally healthy workplace is proven to improve productivity, reduce absenteeism and turnover, safer work practices with fewer injuries and in turn fewer workers compensation claims.

As always, we are here to help you.  If you require help developing the appropriate Policies and procedures or wish to discuss your situation, give us a call on 02 6009 1000


The WorkBetter Team

Published: Wednesday, December 7th, 2022

Apply Now

[apptivo_job_applicantform name="jaform"]