It’s common knowledge that we spend a large portion of our lives at work, and while this is generally considered to positively impact our well-being, mental health concerns are on the rise.
A recent survey conducted by Ben – an organisation committed to supporting automotive industry employees – has shown “that mental health is one of the biggest issues affecting the wellbeing of the automotive industry workforce.” 91% of employees in this sector have been affected by a health and well-being issue in the last year, according to the same survey.
So, why are mental health concerns so prevalent in this industry?
The auto sector is burdened with some of the highest stress and time-dependent tasks, which can affect mental health if not managed carefully. Employees are often judged on productivity, efficiency and output. Not to mention that the work is often physically demanding. As a predominantly male field, employees working in this industry often have trouble opening up about their problems. Unfortunately, there is a stigma that asking for help with a mental health issue makes you weak, when in fact, it does the opposite.
Although individuals have a responsibility to look after themselves, there comes a time when employers need to step up and provide the necessary support, especially if a mental health issue has arisen due to a workplace-related problem. The Automotive Industry Survey 2018 discovered that only 1 in 4 employees reported receiving support to help understand or manage their mental health. In today’s world, where the topic of mental health is no longer taboo, this shouldn’t be the case. The pressure and impact of mental health issues are severe, and employers must act. The role of a mechanic can’t be changed – there’s not a lot that can be done to relieve the pressure of deadlines or make the work less physical – but that’s not to say there’s no hope.
Garages such as ourselves that provide free, round-the-clock professional help and advice for their employees are leading the way for other automotive businesses in the hope of improving the overall well-being of this sector’s workforce. Our staff have access to a comprehensive Employee Assistance Programme through Health Assured, the number one workplace wellbeing provider for four years. This programme provides our workers with 24/7 counselling and advice regarding any mental health matter via telephone, chat message, or however they wish to communicate. They can speak to mental health professionals about anything affecting them in their personal life or the workplace, whether that be financial difficulties or relationship breakdowns.
We are responsible to our staff to support them in any way we can. We mean it when we say our door’s always open.
Our staff’s mental health is a top priority
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