All employers are legally required to assess their working environment for systems and practices which lead to health and safety hazards, including stress, and to put in place preventative measures.

– Health & Safety Authority (HSA)

 

stress-audits

It makes good business and ethical sense to incorporate a good risk assessment for psychosocial risk factors (stressors) into an organisations’ overall Safety Management System.

Upstream can help organisations achieve this successfully, and in doing so, protect employees, employers and businesses from unnecessary harm.

The cost to Europe of work-related depression was estimated to be in excess of €617 billion annually, according to a recent EU-funded study by Matrix (2013). This total was made up of costs to employers resulting from absenteeism and presenteeism, loss of productivity, health care costs and social welfare costs in the form of disability benefit payments.

These figures make for alarming reading. While the financial cost is colossal and no doubt hinders business, the other side of these statistics is that the personal cost to those injured and suffering as a result of work related stress is hard to quantify. Neither individuals nor businesses desire this outcome, and it is without doubt in the best interests of all parties to do what is necessary to prevent it from happening.

Only 26% of organisations in the EU have procedures in place to deal with stress. This may in part be due to many organisations feeling they have insufficient information on how to identify psychosocial risk factors in their workplaces. We at Upstream are happy to assist in conducting such risk assessments and carrying out stress audits, providing a real value added service to businesses.

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