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Use a mental health checklist to monitor employee health

Keep an eye out for mental health risks and mitigate the 6 actors that lead to workplace stress with a mental health checklist. Talk to your employees, learn what they're struggling with, and come up with solutions

What is a mental health checklist?

A mental health checklist is a form used to evaluate employee mental health and flag any mental health risks in the workplace. With awareness of mental health increasing in the mainstream, work-related stress is one of the main focuses of human resources.

Also, employee mental health has a significant effect on productivity, so stressed or burned-out employees translate to a large number of losses in company revenue. According to Gallup, mental health-related losses account for $400 to $500 billion dollars each year.

Psychiatric risk assessment templates designed for work-related mental health issues identify six main factors in employee mental health:

  1. Demands: An employee’s work schedule, work environment, and workload
  2. Control: The scope of control that an employee has over their projects, approach, and decisions
  3. Support: The resources and encouragement a company gives their employees to help them manage their workload
  4. Relationships: The quality of communication and work dynamics between co-workers
  5. Role: The degree to which employees understand and appreciate their role in the company
  6. Changes: The way a company handles changes that have a signifcant impact on employees

There are 3 key steps that any mental health checklist needs to facilitate in order to effectively identify and repair mental health risks.

Step 1: Identify mental health risks

Although there are factors that commonly cause stress at work, your company needs to be able to address the specific risks present in your business. Start by using a sample mental health checklist to identify which risks could be present in the workplace. You also need to identify who in your company is most exposed to mental health risks.

Analyze existing employee data

Your business already has a certain amount of employee data gathered through various means, such as personal information, job interviews, and company records. This data helps identify people subject to mental health risks.

The first thing to do is look for a large number of absences in the attendance records. A large volume of absences shows a lack of motivation and might indicate work-related stress. Another useful data point mentioned in the HSE mental health plan risk assessment form is turnover rate. A high turnover rate indicates that something about the work causes new employees to quickly quit their jobs.

It’s worth checking the company’s productivity data and performance appraisals for information. Meetings are also a good opportunity to identify possible mental health risks.

Conduct surveys

In large organizations, surveys can help identify mental health risks. Although surverys can be biased and inaccurate, they can still provide insight into working conditions if the questions are designed properly.

The HSE Management Standards Indicator Tool is a good survey questionnaire to use for this matter. It includes questions that assess how employees feel about various aspects of their work, which you can customize to suit your needs. Remember that your survey needs to address the 6 factors of work-related stress.

Compare the results from each department, and then communicate the results of the survey with the whole team. Then you can have a healthy discussion about addressing these issues.

Initiate toolbox talks

For small groups like a repair and maintenance team, you should conduct toolbox talks. Toolbox talks are short meetings, usually in an informal setting, that remind your team of safety protocols. Since these meetings are for everyone to speak, they can be a good opportunity for identifying mental health risks and discussing possible solutions.

Create focus groups

In large companies, the HSE mental health risk assessment checklist recommends you create focus groups to discuss work-related stress. A focus group is a group discussion betweem only a few (around 6 – 10) members targeting defined topics. Focus groups can help you do a more in-depth examination of workplace mental health risks.

Step 2: Evaluate mental health risks

After gathering data, evaluate and confirm your findings. Confirming your data ensures that you can use your mental health checklist to accurately address the risks present in your business.

One way to do this is by directly consulting employees using focus groups or team meetings. During these discussions, you might discover new issues that you weren’t aware of in step 1.

Group employees according to their similarites, for example, based on their role or their way of working. This will help you analyze any recurring patterns.

Talk to your employees about ways to fix these mental health risks, since they are the ones most exposed to them. They might already have ideas or strategies for fighting workplae stress.

Man in a mental stress situation at work

Step 3: Develop and implement an action plans

After you’re sure of the problem or problems, design a plan for resolving it. Developing an action plan before implementation ensures you stay focused.

Your action plans need to be very specific in and target the root cause of problems, instead of just their symptoms. This means asking questions like:

  • How did this mental health risk become a problem?
  • Was it always an issue?
  • Who are the most affected?
  • What are the specific procedures of the action plan?
  • How did you come up with the plan?
  • Who will lead the procedures in each action plan?
  • What are the target dates for each milestone?

Once these key questions are answered, your next job is to communicate your action plan to everyone involved such as senior management, employees, and other representatives. Once the action plan is approved, you can immediately implement it.

Workflow automation for mental health checklists

Mental health is an issue that almost everyone faces at some point in their personal or professional lives. So having a mental health checklist on hand that helps you identify and record the signs of stress is invaluable. And using workflow automation software like Lumiform to create and manage these checklists makes ensuring employee well-being that much easier.

The desktop app lets you create custom checklists in minutes, and you can use them from anywhere as long as you have a mobile device. In addition to providing a standardized way of conducting interviews, toolbox talks, and more, any data you collect with these checklists will be securely stored in the cloud.

Switching to workflow automation software when performing mental health checklist inspections:

Mental health matters spelled out in scrabble letters
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