The truth is out: it’s costly for companies to ignore employee mental health problems.Acute anxiety, depression and other mental illness in Canada accounts for nearly 30 per cent of disability claims and 70 per cent of the total healthcare costs. Declining productivity due to absenteeism and compensation claims costs the Canadian economy billions of dollars a year.

Yet by improving the management of mental health in the workplace, productivity losses can be decreased by as much as 30 percent, according to the Mental Health Commission of Canada

Taking measures to create a healthy workplace not only helps you and your employees to live a better life, it helps yourbottom line.

Assessing the Problem

Identifying the mental health of your company—and then finding ways to improve it—can be daunting. Fortunately,the Canadian government has stepped in by launching the National Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace, a roadmap established in 2013 to helpCanadian companies prevent mental health issues.The first of its kind in the world, it’s a set of voluntary guidelines, tools and resources that are now being adopted all over the world to make the workplace a psychologically safe and healthy place.

Know the 13+ Measures of Mental Health

Since an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, the Standard identifies 13+ mental health factors to focus on when assessing the mental health of your employees. You can introduce them to your employees in a series of free animated videos.

  1. Organizational culture
  2. Psychological support
  3. Clear leadership and expectations
  4. Civility and respect
  5. Psychological demands
  6. Growth and development
  7. Recognition and reward
  8. Involvement and influence
  9. Workload management
  10. Engagement
  11. Balance
  12. Psychological protection
  13. Protection of physical safety

The Standard also provides free tools, videos and courses to identify mental health risks in the workplace and create cost-effective programs to address them. Start with the “Assembling the Pieces Implementation Guide.”Finally, check out the free toolkit and online coursethat provides practical advice for implementing key elements of the Standard.

Watch this video to find out more about the National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety.