A recent research study conducted by Aviva raised a rather alarming statistic that only 4% of the employees questioned say they would approach their boss with a health concern.
Most of the UK workforce suffer in silence with a health or other personal issue rather than making their boss or co-workers aware of their situation. The Health and Workplace study found only 5% of employees would confide in their coworkers while just 1% would trust their problems with their HR department.
When you compare this to the individuals nearest and dearest, 60% of respondents stated they would share their issue with their partner while 33% would be happy to speak with their family GP.
Although many of the individuals questioned stated they would not disclose information to protect their privacy, a worrying 21% of respondents felt admitting a health or personal issue to their employer could affect their work prospects.
The organisations leaders who were questioned had a differing perspective, 39% answered positively to making a point of identifying any employee issues whilst a further 42% say they work with an open door policy.
In contrast to the open door policies and efforts to identify employee problems, 10% of individuals simply do not trust their boss.
It seems many organisations are trying to do their bit to tackle their employees health and personal issues but are the employees recognising their employers efforts. Introducing a confidential employee support line and employee benefits such as group health insurance and income protection to help support employees through any difficult issues life throws at them are great steps however they must be communicated correctly to be valued by your people.
With the introduction of such benefits it is so important to make employees aware of these services and the cost of providing them. Only with greater communication can these benefits truly be utilised.