EXCLUSIVE: The vast majority (95%) of organisations offer some form of mental wellbeing education and support to their employees. This follows the trend we have seen, whereby awareness of, and a desire to support, mental wellbeing has risen up the corporate agenda.
The Employee Benefits research 2020, published in May 2020, which surveyed 269 HR decision-makers, found that last year, 10% said they did not offer any form of mental wellbeing support, down from 18% in 2018 and 16% in 2017. In line with trends, we have seen in recent years, the use of digital content is now the main ways in which respondents provide education and support around wellbeing, followed by face-to-face communications.
This year, mental wellbeing is the one exception to this, however, given there is just one percentage point difference between those using printed materials and those using a face-to-face approach, this may be due to the sample size.
In this instance, employers may well use digital content as the first port of call to signpost employees to face-to-face support or to provide further information to support the help given during face-to-face sessions. Counselling services or employee assistance programmes (EAPs) remain the top health and wellbeing benefit, offered as a core benefit to all staff by 86% of respondents.
This has consistently been the case since 2004, although the proportion of respondents that offer this benefit has grown steadily over time. This is hardly surprising given the increasing focus on mental health that we have seen over the years. On-site health and wellbeing events, and mental health champions or first aid training have both risen up the list this year to take second and third place in the list of the most commonly offered benefits.
This may reflect organisational’ priorities in engaging all employees with health and wellbeing initiatives and supporting their workforces’ mental wellbeing.