The workplace provides individuals with a sense of purpose, acceptance within society and opportunities for development.
A mentally healthy workplace gets the best out of your employees. It helps create a more engaged and productive workforce, ultimately attracting and retaining great staff.
Poor mental health comes at a huge cost to the suffering individuals, their family and friends, but also to their workplace if they fail to address the existence of poor mental health in their organisation. It is now the leading cause of sickness absence and long-term work incapacity in most developed countries.
The cost of doing nothing
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) investigated the cost associated with poor mental health in the workplace. It is estimated that untreated mental health conditions cost Australian employers 10.9 billion every year. These costs are made up of a combination of absenteeism, presenteeism and compensation claims.
Absenteeism and presenteeism create additional costs for employers through reduced productivity. To calculate the impact on your business, presenteeism costs businesses an average of $3,401 per year for a worker experiencing mental ill-health and up to $5,305 for workers with severe mental ill-health. With absenteeism costs due to mental ill-health about $825 per worker every year.
Mental ill-health is likely to be present in your workplace, whether you see it or not and neglecting it is simply bad business.
Employers can play a signficant role in promoting and maintaining the health and well-being of their workers. Given the high economic and personal costs that result from poor mental health in the workplace there are obvious advantages to investing in mental health initiatives and training.
PwC estimated that for every $1 invested by employers in interventions to create a mentally healthy workplace can, on average, result in a positive return on investment of $2.30 through improved productivity and savings from reduced workers compensation claims.
There are also a range of other benefits enjoyed by all employees including increased staff engagement and morale as well as the recruitment and retention of skilled staff.