Mental Health Matters: Tech Workers are Five Times More Likely To Suffer From Depression
Mental health is an issue in each and every industry, however the tech industry stands out due to the high-stress rate. According to BIMA’S Tech Inclusivity & Diversity Report, 52% of tech professionals have suffered some form of depression or anxiety.
Moreover, tech professionals are five times more likely to be depressed than the UK average. All tech roles require analytical thinking and problem-solving skills, however the fast-paced nature of tech roles can lead to an overwhelming level of stress that impacts workers’ mental health negatively.
Employees can start feeling burdened, isolated, or exhausted by difficult projects or if they feel like they don’t have control over their work. Additionally, continuous or relentless change which is a common occurrence in the tech industry can also significantly impact the mental health of workers. Higher rates of absenteeism and more mistakes can be fuelled by long work hours.
Mental health is just as critical as physical health, and it should be given the same consideration by tech companies. When employees are part of a healthy work environment, then there is higher productivity as well as job satisfaction. If mental health issues are discussed openly and supported then employees are likely to remain committed and loyal to their employer.
So how can you transform your workplace’s mental health culture?
Mental health policies
A mental health policy is important for any workplace as it gives guidance to employees so they know where and how to see help for mental health issues at work. Furthermore, employee surveys to determine wellbeing, Mental Health First Aid training, as well as regular one-to-ones can also be beneficial.
Wellbeing at the core of your business
Creating a supportive work environment, coaching, mentoring, setting clear expectations and standards, and offering remote working arrangements can help employees with mental health issues. Businesses can also assist by educating managers on mental health, and providing mental health benefits. Mental health should also be a priority in employee performance reviews, talent management, and employee engagement surveys. Not only that, but employee wellbeing should be a priority in hiring, onboarding and other company functions, as well as it being linked to other initiatives within the business.
Keep employee’s needs in mind during business change
When changes are being implemented in the workplace it is critical to keep employees in mind. Businesses should make sure that their employees’ voices are heard if a change is underway. If you don’t then your employees may be adversely affected and their mental health could suffer if it comes across like the business is indifferent to their needs.
Mental Health Champions and Mentors
Your employees can have a healthier routine at work when you promote mindfulness, coaching, and mentorship. Businesses can assist their employees in developing these skills by encouraging them to participate in self-care activities that will help them take care of their health. Not only that, but as a business you can also help your employees succeed by fostering a mentorship culture where employees can learn from each other and progress in their careers.
When businesses focus on their employees’ health there are higher retention and productivity levels. When your employees know and are shown that their employer cares about their mental health, they are far more likely to seek help for when they’re struggling with mental health. Destigmatising mental health issues in the workplace and creating an open environment will benefit your employees, and ultimately your business.