Stress risk assessments: five top tips

Workplace absences linked to stress cost the UK economy more than £5 billion a year.

With workplace absences linked to stress costing the UK economy more than £5 billion a year, IOSH’s Food and Drink Industries Group will examine how to manage the risks at its workshop next month.

One of the sessions will cover how to do a stress risk assessment. Ahead of the event, we asked Group Vice-Chair Pamela Brown for five top tips on doing such an assessment.

  1. Ensure you have Senior Management commitment. This is probably the most important factor. It helps enormously if the people at the top buy into the process.
  2. Ensure you have a champion or champions at or near the top of the organisation. Someone in authority who will champion the process can help ensure that others understand the process and persuade others to go with it in a positive manner.
  3. Ensure you have an effective communications strategy. Managers and employees need to clearly understand what is going to happen, why and when. They need to understand the crucial role they play in identifying stress problems and how they will contribute to managing stress and improving wellbeing at work.
  4. Provide training for managers on managing stress risks. Management training can make a huge difference to the effectiveness of Stress Risk Assessment. To begin with, investment in training is a strong statement of employer commitment. Training will raise management awareness of stress risks at work. Training can also play a big part in facilitating improved management behaviours. But perhaps most importantly, managers are key to implementing action plans to minimise risks and enhance wellbeing at work.
  5. Understand where to get information and help with a stress risk assessment. You can find a great deal of useful information all stress on HSE’s website http://www.hse.gov.uk/stress. You can access HSE’s own Work Related Stress Indicator Tool and their analysis tool on HSE’s website. There are also companies who can provide an outsourced Stress Risk Assessment survey service, using the HSE questions as the basis for the survey.

Want to know more? Places are still available for the event, being held at College Court, Leicester, on Tuesday 9 July. Click here for more information and to book a place.

Marcus Boocock
Communications Officer +44 (0)116 257 3139
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