In light of the recent laws around ‘The right to disconnect’ we discuss mental health and wellness at work. In today’s fast-paced business environment, attracting and retaining top talent is more crucial than ever; yet many companies overlook a critical factor in achieving this goal: prioritising and creating real tangible policies to ensure good mental health and well-being of their employees.

 

The Cost of Neglect

According to the Australian Human Rights Commission, over one in five adults will experience a mental illness in any given year. Presenteeism, where employees are physically present but mentally checked out, is estimated to cost billions annually.

 

The Benefits of Well-being

The good news is, investing in mental health has long lasting benefits:

  • Increased Productivity & Engagement: When mental well-being is prioritised, employees are better equipped to focus, be creative, and deliver their best work.
 
  • Improved Retention & Talent Acquisition: Employees are more likely to stay with a company that invests in their well-being, reducing costly turnover and recruitment processes.

 

 
  • Enhanced Company Culture & Employer Brand: Demonstrating your commitment to your employees as people, not just workers, gives you a competitive brand edge and will put you in front of your competitors.
  
  • Reduced Sick Leave & Health Costs: Promoting healthy habits and early intervention can lower healthcare costs and sick leave entitlements for your team.
 
 

Building a Culture of Well-being: Actionable Steps for Leaders 

Here are some actionable steps leaders and employers can take to foster a workplace of well-being for their team: 

  • Shifting the Conversation: Encourage regular conversations about mental health, and look to appoint a mental health champion that other employees seem to confide in. This normalises the topic and creates a safe space for open discussion and seeking help. 
 
  • Creating a Supportive Environment: Promote work-life balance with flexible work arrangements and breaks, fostering a culture of respect through anti-discrimination and anti-bullying policies. This ensures a healthy and inclusive environment where employees can thrive.

 

  • Investing in Resources: Provide training on stress management and mental health awareness to empower your team. Go beyond training by offering access to external counselling & wellness resources. Consider meditation apps or sponsored fitness programs. This approach demonstrates your investment in a healthy and thriving workforce.

 

The Bottom Line: A Win-Win Proposition

Investing in mental health fosters positive outcomes: greater productivity, reduced absenteeism, and a more engaged and loyal workforce. This translates directly to a thriving business culture and a competitive edge. Don’t forget to outline these initiatives when interviewing and hiring new team members, it’s important.

Ready to build a thriving workplace culture? At Recruitment Central, we offer more than recruitment – we partner with companies to create strong, healthy teams and foster employee well-being. Contact us today to discuss your specific needs and unlock the full potential of your workforce.

Message from the CEO

In light of the new Australian government laws on the ‘right to disconnect,’ I want to emphasise the importance as employers of aligning our practices with these new regulations. 

 

It is crucial that we respect our employees’ right to refuse after-hours work-related contact, ensuring a healthy work-life balance. By updating our position descriptions to accurately reflect the expectations regarding out-of-hours communication and responsibilities, we can demonstrate our commitment to compliance and employee well-being. 

 

These laws underscore the significance of maintaining up-to-date position descriptions, employee handbooks and internal policies that clearly outline the nature of roles requiring after-hours availability, contributing to a transparent and respectful work environment.  

It’s a great idea to conduct internal training sessions on ‘switching off’ and reiterate the expectations around work hours and downtime. 

If you require guidance and advice on crafting a new policy or setting up an employee handbook please reach out to us we are here to partner with you. Till next month.

Regards

Sandra

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Right to Disconnect – Employers Guide

The Australian “Right to Disconnect” legislation is coming in August 2024 and, for many employers, it might seem like an added layer of complexity. However, here at Recruitment Central, we see it as an opportunity to refine communication practices and update policies, ensuring clear expectations.

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