HR in 90 seconds - February 2019

Posted in : Supplementary Articles NI on 18 February 2019
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In this month’s ‘HR in 90 seconds…’ we consider some takeaways from #timetotalk day – is it as simple as asking ‘how are you?’  Also, have you registered for the next Employment Law at 11?

Mental Health Presenteeism Rising

Last month we looked at the HR trends that may be coming our way in 2019, one of these was the battle against presenteeism in the workplace. HR Review have reported on research carried out by Canada Life showing that presenteeism is rising with over a fifth of respondents saying that they go into work when mentally unwell. Year on year this research shows that mental health presenteeism is a growing issue in the UK.

One of the main issues concerning mental health issues is the isolating effect it can have on an individual. According to the research over a third (35 per cent) of employees are not currently aware of any form of support their workplace offers to manage sickness absence, while one in eight (13 per cent) definitely do not have any support options available to them.

The reality is that these issues could be combatted and improved with a more flexible approach to working, a positive attitude towards mental health issues and increased workplace support.

Three in ten (28 per cent) believe flexible working options would help with both their physical and mental health, a similar number of workers (27 per cent) say a more positive workplace attitude towards health and wellbeing would help, while a fifth (19 per cent) think that better workplace support (for example, Employee Assistance Programmes) would be beneficial.

Is it perhaps part of the problem that mental health in the workplace is not an easy conversation?

Thursday 7th February was #TimetoTalk day, an initiative which encourages everyone to talk about mental health. It was evident on social media that lots of organisation used it as an opportunity to remind employees and others of the support that is available to anyone who may be struggling with their mental health. Lots of organisations last week were getting involved in ‘#itstimetotalk

In support of the #itstimetotalk initiative, Legal and General have produced a simple video looking at the classic signs of a colleague who may be suffering from a mental health problem. This simple 1:35 video has several things to consider when you think that a colleague in the workplace might be suffering:

  1. Everyone is on the same team
  2. Communication is critical
  3. If you see something might be wrong just ask!
  4. It’s not only physical injuries that cause problems
  5. #itsnotaredcardoffence

It is so important to start that conversation regardless of where you are and give someone that space to express how they are feeling! It can be as simple as asking 'How are you?' 

How should employers deal with SARs that relate to disciplinary and grievance procedures?

In this month’s First Tuesday Chris Fullerton looks at ‘How should employers deal with SARs that relate to disciplinary and grievance procedures?’.

Does the human touch still matter?

Also an article from HR Magazine on Why the human touch still matters?  Considers some thoughts around machines being replacement for humans and if it’s suitable in all transactions.

Employment Law at 11 Webinar

Friday 1st March 2019 (11:00am - 11:45am)

Join Scott Alexander and Seamus McGranaghan and up to 500 participants as they discuss your employment law queries live in our new series, “Employment Law at 11”. 

Tell your HR colleagues and register individually or get your HR team around the computer whilst and use the webinars as monthly group learning opportunities. Ask any questions (on employment law) and hear the answers live or catch up later when we upload both a recording and transcript of the discussion. 

Remember – send questions in live during the webinars or drop a line in advance to . Anonymity assured.

Register Now:


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This article is correct at 18/02/2019

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