Mind awards Silver to The Health Insurance Group in recognition of mental health support for their staff

The Health Insurance Group today announces it has achieved a Silver Award in Mind’s “Workplace Wellbeing Awards 2018/2019”*.

The Health Insurance Group was one of 105 organisations to take part in Mind’s third annual Workplace Wellbeing Index which benchmarks companies in terms of their policies and practices. The company has been awarded Silver, which recognises the business as making demonstrable achievements in promoting staff mental health, taking action across a number of key areas deemed critical by the charity, and demonstrating progress and impact over time.

Brett Hill, managing director at The Health Insurance Group, said:

“We advise clients on mental health and wellbeing initiatives and wanted to make sure our own house was in order too. Our clients really value our first-hand experience of supporting staff in practice.”

The commitment started in early 2018 when championing the support of mental health in the workplace began in earnest, and the senior team at The Health Insurance Group has fully bought into the concept and is committed to running multiple holistic initiatives.

This kicked off with Mind running mental health training for 17 managers and their team leaders in March 2018. Following this, the company worked closely with employees who wanted to share their own mental health journeys with others. Focus groups were then run to see how to do more, and from this, a number of workshops have been run throughout the company, covering a range of health and wellbeing topics including stress. A Wellbeing Ethos has also been developed, publicising the company’s commitment to supporting mental health.

As part of this commitment, the company signed up to Mind’s Workplace Wellbeing Index, to benchmark progress and identify any opportunities to do more.

The Workplace Wellbeing Index – which involves in-depth surveys with members of staff across the company – found that the work has had a great impact. Key assessed areas where the company ranked highly include:

  • ‘Culture and engagement’ where the company supports a good work/life balance and senior management proactively support mental wellbeing.
  • ‘Support’ in providing the tools needed to manage mental health – such as time off if required, making workplace adjustments and having knowledgeable and approachable managers to discuss concerns with. The business has a Flexible Working Policy, which provides definitive guidance for management to deal with employee requests, whilst also giving staff the knowledge about how to apply for it – aiding clarity all round.
  • ‘Knowledge and Skills’, such as sharing personal experiences of managing mental health, to gain insight into what support works well and what more could be done. Breaking down stigma and taboos surrounding mental ill-health was one key area the business wanted to tackle, and having an open dialogue has helped employees to feel better understood and supported.
  • ‘People Management’ with senior leadership buy-in, and line managers signposting employees to further support if needed.
  • ‘Promotion of wellbeing initiatives’ with a good working environment and initiatives proactively promoted.

Other initiatives The Health Insurance Group provides to support the wellbeing of its workforce includes:

  • Monthly committees – called ‘Your Voice’, this creates a forum for employees to discuss any issues pertinent to their working life, from operational matters to charity events to physical and mental health and wellbeing initiatives.
  • Health kiosks – regularly held on site, these provide employees with the opportunity to stay on top of their physical wellbeing. Providing a snapshot of physical health – such as monitoring BMI and blood pressure – it tackles potential hidden health concerns. As physical and mental health are inextricably linked, this holistic approach supports mental health too.
  • Employee Benefits – including company-funded group life assurance, private medical insurance and employee assistance programmes – supporting financial, physical and mental wellbeing.
  • Mental health training – the business is hosting another mental health training day for a further 16 employees in May – primarily managers and sales staff – so 13% of its overall workforce will have been trained, enabling them to provide first aid and support for people experiencing a problem.

Brett Hill, added:

“Achieving a Silver Award in the Workplace Wellbeing Awards 2018/19 is a great accolade and demonstrates the hard work we’ve put into ensuring that our staff have access to holistic health and wellbeing support. Scoring particularly highly in the culture, engagement and support categories, we’re pleased that our employees feel able to discuss concerns at work and know that robust support is available to them. This award is a great recognition of our efforts; as a benchmarking exercise it also highlights areas where we could do more, and we’re very much committed to looking at further ways we can support the mental wellbeing of our employees.”