Supporting and promoting health and wellbeing in the workplace is important for staff and business owners alike. Providing a physically and mentally healthy workplace is beneficial for all who work there, as it reduces staff absenteeism, increases productivity and makes the workplace more enjoyable.
If you are an employer, workplace health and safety laws require you to look after your workers’ mental health just as you would physical health.
This includes minimising risks to workers’ mental health, preventing discrimination based on mental health, protecting privacy and not taking unfair action against workers because of a mental health condition.
Workplace Mental Health and Wellbeing Resources
There are many excellent apps available, both free and paid, to assist with all aspects of physical and mental wellbeing in the workplace that you can offer to staff – or use yourself as a business owner.
- Beyond Blue NewAccess for Small Business Owners – mental health coaching program for small business owners and sole traders.
- Heads Up – better mental health in the workplace.
- Ahead for Business – supporting small business to be mentally healthy.
- My Business Health – provided by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman.
- Black Dog Institute – independent not-for-profit medical research institute offering HeadGear phone app to build resilience and wellbeing.
- Head to Health – Government digital mental health gateway.
- Everymind – mental health and wellbeing advice for small business owners.
- RUOK – how to ask if someone is okay.
Creating a Healthy Workplace
Creating wellbeing in the workplace doesn’t have to take a lot of time and resources. Small activities carried out regularly accumulate over time into good habits and everyday practice.
Encourage conversations about health and wellbeing, check in with staff about stress they may be experiencing, offer team activities that promote wellbeing, and provide access to tools like the apps listed above to assist employees in managing their mental health and wellbeing.
Many other apps provide education about mental health and practical tools to change mental and emotional states. Consider offering your employees paid subscriptions to an app of their choice to foster wellbeing. Check out Unwinding Anxiety, Headspace, Waking Up, Calm, Ten Percent Happier and Productive for starters.
HeadsUp has a great guide to promoting health and wellbeing in your business. Find out more about workplace stress, rights and responsibilities, risk factors and how to develop an action plan.