Workplace health and mental wellbeing matter. In 2019 the Wates Group was awarded Bronze in MIND’s Wellness Index Awards. This award is given to employers who have started their journey towards better mental health at work by developing and implementing initiatives that promote positive mental health for staff.
This was the first time the business entered for accreditation, which was based on an all-staff survey in December 2018. Building on its outcomes, further research was carried out to identify the key areas of employee concern and awareness.
Mental Health in Construction By the end of the year, Wates had trained 273 employees as Mental Health First Aiders and had established a network of 30 Regional Mental Health First Aider Champions. The Mental Health First Aiders (MHFAs) work across the UK to listen to and provide guidance on the available support to struggling colleagues. Over the last twelve months, research has been undertaken to measure the impact of these MHFAs. It shows that 95% of them have used and applied their skills since their training, dealing with a wide range of issues such as depression, bereavement, financial difficulties, bullying, harassment, anxiety, work-related stress, personal relationships, domestic abuse and people having suicidal thoughts.
This research is helping to drive communications around mental health, suicide awareness, stress and fatigue, and work/life balance. During 2019 there was a learning and development programme provided to Safety, Health and Environment advisors to equip them with the skills to run stress management workshops and provide ‘Occupational Health in Construction’ training to colleagues.
Supporting Health and Mental Wellbeing at Wates Group