How can IT Support Employee Well-Being and Mental Health?


How can IT support employee well-being and mental health?

Given that the way we live our lives has drastically changed over the past year due to the global pandemic, it follows that this period of uncertainty will have taken its toll on employees’ well-being, as well as their mental health. Since we all spend much of our time working, it makes sense that employers have a responsibility toward their staff to help them feel secure, give them a sense of purpose and make their day go by smoothly, therefore contributing positively to their overall sense of well-being.

So, how can the tech and systems you use as an organisation facilitate this?

1) Give employees the flexibility of working either from home or in the office, or both. Where employees have the choice, they will make the best decision for their own circumstances. Some may feel that a commute is detrimental to their mental health, and equipping them with the tech to be able to work from home is key. It’s then important to keep everyone in the loop regardless of whether they work onsite or off.

2) Keep all employees connected. Whether they are working from home or in the office, fostering a sense of community and connection is vital. Using tools to enable this is one way of doing this easily. Holding virtual meetings, and using video conferencing, collaborative documents and quick messaging applications such as Slack or Teams mean that no one is left out.

3) Make sure that all systems in place are up to date and operate smoothly to remove unnecessary stress for employees. It can be incredibly frustrating to find yourself stymied by out-of-date tech when working hard to hit a deadline, for example. Workplace stress can cause employees to take many days off sick, so it is in everyone’s interest to reduce levels where possible, and this is an easy way to do so.

4) Online mental health support. What digital mental health services could you make available to your employees? Access to a service such as The Circle Line can provide anonymous support to employees. According to their website, poor mental well-being is costing businesses £2,277 per employee per year. This can manifest itself in poor performance, absence and team dysfunction. Having someone to talk to can fully unlock employee potential.

5) Online workouts/yoga – can you organise some more holistic activities for your employees? These could take place online. Virtual workplace wellness programmes can help keep your employees healthy, focused and connected.

6) Workshops, days of fun. Interactive employee workshops held virtually can foster connection, and can be valuable brainstorming opportunities.

7) Use an online well-being and engagement platform such as Trickle, which offers real-time opportunities for staff to voice any concerns and then make improvements collaboratively. Keeping abreast of problems as they arise means that nothing is left to fester and employees feel they are being listened to.

8) Ensure that HR and benefits systems are available online and are easy to access from home or work.

9) Work/life balance. Cloud technology can be a great help in this instance and can even improve the productivity of employees whilst facilitating and healthier and happier workforce.

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