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H7. Mental Health and Wellbeing

Committed since:

20 June, 2013

Delivery plan:

Submitted: 20 June, 2013

Mental Health Adjustment – We actively ensure that people with mental health conditions are managed at work in the best way possible with information, support reasonable flexibilities and workplace adjustments

• H7. BT has over the years worked at ‘normalising’ mental health in the workplace. As part of one of our mental health campaigns, BT’s CMO publically signed up to the Time to Change pledge in 2011. This was a national programme to end discrimination faced by people with mental health problems. BT is a member of Business in the Community’s (BiTC) Workwell movement. From June 2010 to June 2012, BT saw a 21.5% reduction in the annual prevalence rate of mental health related sickness absence. The company-wide mental health strategy comprises of a 3-tier framework. Level 1 of the framework promotes good mental health and aims to prevent ill health. Information is provided through a dedicated intranet site, via knowledge calls, campaigns like the health promotion programme Work Fit (See P4), road shows, mental health workshops, training for managers and the company newsletter.

• Level 2 aims to identify early signs of distress and implement early intervention. Over 6,000 people managers have been trained via a one day face-to-face course in managing common mental health problems. STREAM stress risk assessment tool and management tool which identifies sources of difficulties and prompts managers to discuss and support the employee is available on-line. A health and well-being passport scheme which is a confidential document drawn up by the employee and employer describing how an employee can be managed and supported during their difficult periods is also available.

• Level 3 focuses on the provision of services and resources for those who develop or have pre-existing mental health problems at work. Services range from self-help material, training on how to manage mental health in the workplace, a 24/7 counselling and advice line and a more specialised support including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.

• BT’s HR’s policy includes processes for rehabilitating and making reasonable adjustments to enable employees to return to work and remain at work. Adjustments are considered at every stage of employment, including recruitment, induction and training. Managers are encouraged to maintain regular reviews with the employee to review the adjustments to ensure that they continue to be effective.

• Employees can access information regarding managing changing capabilities via BT’s HR intranet site, knowledge calls and the health and well-being site. Recognised external support services are recommended as appropriate.

• BT has recently piloted resilience building training for people managers and we are embedding this into our leadership offerings as well as rolling it out more widely across the business.

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