An executive agency of one of the main Government departments.
Office-based, this organisation operates from four sites across the UK, employing approximately 1,000 people in a variety of job roles and the full range of head office functions.
Through an employment survey carried out in 2013 and individual occupational health referrals, an issue was identified regarding stress in one of the departments at the organisation.
Our client was seeking a section-specific stress risk audit and individual stress risk assessments. A review of the current stress management policy and the process involved was also required, as well as a review of action taken to date and key issues within the section.
Due to the sensitive nature of the issue, there was initial reluctance amongst staff and managers who consequently needed to be put at ease and reassured throughout the whole process.
At Fusion, we worked closely with the internal HR team, Head of Department, health and safety team, union representatives and in-house counsellor to ensure a full understanding of the current situation.
An independent occupational health professional carried out individual assessments of stressors within the department section during one-to-one interviews.
We also considered:
All staff grades were covered in the line management chain, up to and including Head of Department.
We then produced a written report regarding the section-specific stressors identified. Suggestions were given for remedial actions, including proposals for monitoring and any further work required.
A presentation was made to senior management, followed by a further presentation to staff and union representatives. Individual assessments were produced with action plans proposed as appropriate.
Recommendations were made on how to improve the organisation’s stress policy and risk assessment process. Suggestions were made on how processes could be streamlined to ensure ownership within the organisation.
An issue was identified relating to stress caused by high levels of staff sickness in the department. Senior managers did not recognise there was an issue until they received feedback from staff interviews. This highlighted that training was required to identify stressors.
Following the one-to-one interviews, we agreed on the management action plan. Actions involved more engagement from staff at all levels in the decision-making process and more visibility of senior management.
Based on our understanding of the corporate culture within the organisation, we worked with the on-site counsellor and union representatives to provide an external and unbiased review of the situation.
“The whole survey was carried out in a professional manner with reports and assessments produced in good time. The survey was thorough, with staff and managers put at ease after initial reluctance.
Informative but diplomatic presentations and feedback were given and presentations adapted to suit the relevant audience due to the sensitivity of the information.”
Health & Safety Advisor at Government Department