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Mental Health within HMRC - James Brambles’ Story

Category: testimonial, Mental Health, Flexible Working, Government, Flexible, Jobs in Government, HM Revenue & Customs, What Our People Say, Staff Testimonial, UK Government, Civil Service

Mental Health.

James Brambles is the Finance Director for the CFO Group within HMRC and has been with the organisation for 6 years as a Senior Civil Servant. James is married with three sons and has just recently celebrated his 46th birthday.

‘I joined HMRC in 2016. I was previously working at another government department but my manager at the time had moved into HMRC and said it was a great organisation and so I followed him and have been here since.

I really enjoy working for HMRC. The most important service we do is bring in revenues which fund all the services a lot of us take for granted. But on a more granular level, it is a family friendly organisation that has allowed me to progress my career whilst raising a young family. I have also been able to support people through mentoring – which I thoroughly enjoy. In the last year I mentored 4 people and it was great to see them all go on to develop the skills they need for substantive promotions and for me, this was a career highlight.  

Similarly, being a part of the ground-breaking work around raising the mental health awareness has been rewarding. I always think some of the most positive feedback I ever received in my entire working career has actually been as a result of this type of work; whereby people have actually said they feel far more confident to open up to a manager, a doctor or family and friends.

I always have quite a bubbly exterior, but I do actually suffer with mental health through depression and chronic anxiety. For me, my mental health issues weren’t necessarily based on work, but everyone’s situation is different. Through speaking to my GP I decided that medication supplemented with counselling was best for me and I am in a much better place.

When I was very open about my health challenges at work, everyone was very accepting of what I was going through. Added flexibility in the workplace is something that really helped me, for instance when working from home I sometimes block out an hour in my diary which allows me to get some fresh air, whether that be from a walk or a run.

I would thoroughly recommend working for HMRC as there are no barriers to progression if you suffer from mental health problems or any other disabilities and health related issues. We as an organisation are extremely supportive of mental health and we have some fantastic support networks available, such as our mental health advocates we have onsite and the support available by seeking professional help with external organisations’ – James Brambles, Finance Director HMRC


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HM Revenue & Customs

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