37% offer employee assistance programmes as part of mental health support

mental healthEmployee Benefits poll: More than a third (37.3%) of respondents said the main benefit they offer in order to support mental health among employees is an employee assistance programme (EAP).

One in 10 (12.1%) of respondents to an online survey conducted by Employee Benefits revealed that they provide access to counselling or coaching, 7.6% said they offer mental health first aiders and occupational health, and 4.3% answered that they have awareness training and mental health days.

Meanwhile, 8.7% said they offer a mental health, wellbeing or mood tracking app, while the same proportion provided nothing at all in the way of support benefits or services.

At the end of October, electrical distribution network operator UK Power Networks rolled out mental health support for its field employees, ahead of Men’s Health Awareness Month in November.

The business, which operates across London, the East and South East, introduced a series of wellbeing events covering psychological safety, neurodiversity, occupational health advice and mental health, some of which will be delivered by ex-Armed Services speakers. Through this, it aims to provide a safe and comfortable environment for employees to learn and share through open discussions, while signposting to support services as well.

This is part of its recognition that operational teams, who spend most of their time working alone on the road, fixing underground or overhead cables, can find it more difficult than office-based staff to access support services.

Connie Dickie, employee engagement manager for UK Power Networks, said: “This new initiative is designed to support the whole person and targets colleagues who in the field are at the sharp end of keeping the power flowing for our customers. There are pressures which come with their jobs, not least staying safe around electricity, and we want them to be assured that we care about their welfare.”