Health and Safety and the wellbeing of our employees has always been paramount at Hughes and Salvidge.
Only a small amount of research can source some worrying statistics:
- 1 out of 6.8 people will experience mental health issues in the workplace
- 1 in 3 people will suffer from depression in their lives
- 12.7% of all sickness absence days can be attributed to mental health conditions
- Every year over 400 construction workers die by suicide
A more promising fact is that when well-being is addressed within the workplace, productivity goes up at least 12%.
Our Mental Health Programme is operated for the team, by the team and is headed up by our lead Mental Health Ambassador. The lead Mental Health Ambassador oversees all of our ambassadors and is qualified through Mental Health First Aid England (MHFA), an organisation that runs training courses to teach people to spot the signs of mental health issues, offer initial help and guide a person towards support.
All of our ambassadors are available to contact via the office numbers and mobile phone as well as through email and in person. All of our ambassador to employee conversations are strictly confidential and issues or concerns are only escalated to our Senior Management and Directors or to outside organisations with the express permission from the employee in question.
We ensure that our ambassadors represent a cross section of the company and are located within our various offices and sites as we are aware that when seeking help, our employees may feel more comfortable talking to someone they know, or sometimes, someone they don’t know very well. It is also easier to spot a change in a colleague when you are around them on a daily basis.
We want to ensure that everyone has the tools available to support their colleagues and friends on a day-to-day basis. With this in mind, we provide training in a ‘top-down’ manner, ensuring our Directors and Senior Management are trained and informed, then our Managers and Supervisors, and on to our teams on the ground and our office staff.
We run training sessions within our quarterly Supervisor meetings and we use the World Health Organisation-approved Black Dog film to illustrate the feelings of anxiety and depression and how they can manifest in someone. Information is distributed to our teams through Daily Activity Briefings, Toolbox Talks, Company Memos, and regular on-site training refreshers.
Hughes and Salvidge follow the MHFA-approved ALGEE method, in order to support our team, in the first instance:
- Approach and Assess
- Give support and information
- Encourage appropriate professional help
- Encourage other support (friends and family, for example)
Signposting is fundamental to the success of our Mental Health Programme. Whether it be to a GP, an outside organisation such as the Samaritans or Mind, or even to piece of literature, it is necessary that our ambassadors can identify the needs of our employees and guide them to the best and most relevant help.
We regularly signpost to the following:
- Mates in Mind
- Talking Change
- Family and friends
- Time to Change
- Better Help
- Local services
To support our ongoing work in this area, we work alongside Health Assured, an Employee Assistance Programme that offers support to our employees and their families online, through a free app, face-to-face and through a 24-hour phone line.
The Health Assured programme offers mental health support through on-demand videos and webinars, home life support and advice such as parenting rights and mortgage information, work life assistance including legal advice, online Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), well-being challenges, medical information and financial information and advice. The service also provides up to four face-to-face counselling sessions per illness, per person. Al of these services are free to our employees and their families.
Alongside our EAP provider, Hughes and Salvidge offer company-funded counselling for those most in need. We work with our employee to ensure we source the right counsellor for them and where they feel they can open up.