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5 things we think you should know about return to work

This short briefing from the Institute for Work & Health explains 5 key areas they think you should know about return to work. Including:
  • When designing a return-to-work program, ensure it offers support to the returning worker in three areas: health services, case coordination and work modification
  • Provide or support access to work-focused cognitive behavioural therapy to help workers with depression return to work
  • Support and train your supervisors to ensure they react with empathy upon hearing of a worker’s injury

Authors: Institute for Work & Health
Tags: disabilities, employment, return-to-work
Type: Tool

A Business Case for the Management Standards for Stress

The aim of this report is to review the extant literature, in order to determine the extent to which effectively managing some or all of the six key sources of occupational stress, specified in the Management Standards, is associated with beneficial business outcomes. These six stressors, or working conditions, are demands, control, support, relationships, role, and change. The results of meta-analyses and literature reviews lead to the conclusion that there is at least some high quality evidence of a business case for each stressor area, although the case is stronger for some working conditions. Evidence is greatest for control, where even intervention studies show that targeted low impact change programmes, which essentially applied the Management Standard of control, have significant, and very meaningful, effects on business outcomes. The business case appears weakest for demands. In particular, high demands only have meaningful and consistent deleterious effects on business outcomes in laboratory experiments. In actual work organisations, high demands are not a good predictor of any business outcome, except when they are accompanied by lower levels of control.

Authors: Frank W Bond | Paul E Flaxman | Sharon Loivette
Tags: mental health, stress, psychosocial factors, management
Type: Report,OPEN ACCESS
Topic: Psychosocial Factors

A clear business case for hiring aspiring workers: findings from a research project that looked at the costs and benefits of recruiting and retaining people living with mental illness

Labour shortages in Canada are projected to reach close to two million workers by 2031, costing the Canadian economy billions in lost GDP annually. Additionally, rising rates of absenteeism, presenteeism, and turnover are now requiring employers to use innovative ways to recruit and retain a qualified labour force. Most people living with a mental health problem or illness want to work and can make important contributions to the workforce if they are adequately supported. This report presents the business case for employers to actively recruit and accommodate people living with a mental illness through an in-depth examination of the financial, social and organizational costs and benefits. The focus is on Aspiring Workers, those people who, due to mental illness, have been unable to enter the workforce, who are in and out of the workforce due to episodic illness and are struggling to remain in the workplace, or who wish to return to work after a lengthy period of illness

Authors: Mental Health Commission of Canada
Tags: accommodation, cost effectiveness, human resources, mental health, recruitment
Type: Report,OPEN ACCESS
Topic: Mental Health

A comparative overview of disability-related employment laws and policies in 193 countries

People with disabilities experience significantly worse employment outcomes than individuals without disabilities. In a study of 91 countries, employment-to-population ratios were significantly lower for people with disabilities. Moreover, studies find clear evidence of discrimination in wages, training, and promotions. The United Nations (UN) Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD) commits countries to enact legislation prohibiting discrimination and guaranteeing reasonable accommodation. However, there has yet to be a global systematic analysis of the extent to which countries are upholding their CRPD commitments. We built the first global database to document employment-related legislative provisions in all countries for persons with disabilities. We report on non-discrimination protections and reasonable accommodation across all 193 UN member states. We found progress and ongoing gaps. Sixty-two percent of countries broadly prohibit disability-based employment discrimination, but far fewer prohibit indirect discrimination (33%) and harassment (30%). Just over half (52%) of countries guarantee reasonable accommodation to workers with disabilities. Similarly, just over half of countries (53%) do not prohibit pay discrimination or discrimination in promotion/demotion. In conclusion, we discuss the need to address gaps in national legislation and to enhance efforts to implement and enforce existing legal rights.

Authors: Jody Heymann | Elizabeth Wong | Willetta Waisath
Tags: disability, employment, labour laws, laws and legislation, policy and procedure, accommodation, diversity and inclusion

A Cost and Cost-Benefit Analysis of the Stand More AT Work (SMArT Work) Intervention

This study conducted a cost and cost-benefit analysis of the Stand More AT (SMArT) Work workplace intervention, designed to reduce sitting time. The study was a cluster two-armed randomised controlled trial involving 37 office clusters (146 desk-based workers) in a National Health Service Trust. The intervention group received a height-adjustable workstation with supporting behaviour change strategies. The control group continued with usual practice. Self-report absenteeism, presenteeism and work productivity were assessed at baseline, 3, 6 and 12 months; and organisational sickness absence records 12 months prior to, and 12 months of the intervention. Mean per employee costs associated with SMArT Work were calculated. Absenteeism, presenteeism and work productivity were estimated, and employer-recorded absence data and employee wage-banding were used to provide a human-capital-based estimate of costs to the organisation. The return-on-investment (ROI) and incremental cost-efficacy ratios (ICER) were calculated. Intervention cost was £692.40 per employee. Cost-benefit estimates show a net saving of £1770.32 (95%CI £-354.40, £3895.04) per employee as a result of productivity increase. There were no significant differences in absence data compared to the control group. SMArT Work provides supporting evidence for policy-makers and employers on the cost benefits of reducing sitting time at work.

Authors: Fehmidah Munir | Paul Miller | Stuart J.H. Biddle | Melanie J. Davies | David W. Dunstan | Dale W Esliger | Laura J. Gray | Sophie E, O\'Connell | Ghazala Waheed | Thomas Yates | Charlotte L. Edwardson
Tags: cost effectiveness, workplace intervention, worker health behaviours
Type: Article