The COVID-19 pandemic has opened up a wealth of opportunities for insurers and employee benefit providers to deliver mental health packages as prolonged lockdowns and periods of mental strain and stress, as well as financial concerns for some, have further raised the significance of mental health in the workplace, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Research by GlobalData highlights that both employees and employers understand the importance of people’s mental health in the workplace. In addition, the Association of British Insurers launched a bespoke mental health training program in April 2021.
GlobalData’s 2020 UK SME Insurance Survey asked respondents to rank possible benefits by importance and found that 21.8% of SMEs consider providing mental health and wellbeing benefits to be their number one priority, second only to financial security. A further 24.7% ranked it as the second most important benefit.
Ben Carey-Evans, Insurance Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “Mental health in the workplace is a highly valued aspect of employee benefits by both the employer and employee. The COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly made employers and companies more aware of the importance of mental wellbeing and these figures indicate that any further emphasis that insurers place on it in their products will be beneficial to them, as the consumer interest is there.”
“Another question on what employees and employers (for their employees) felt was a key benefit also highlighted the importance of mental health. GlobalData’s survey found that 28.5% of employers and 30.8% of employees felt that work-life balance was the most important benefit, placing it significantly higher than finance-related benefits such as pensions or bonuses. Furthermore, a small percentage selected soft-support services as the most important benefit – 8.9% of employers and 5.8% of employees.”