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Should I carry out a Stress Risk Assessment during the Coronavirus pandemic?

YSM Solutions
Published in resilience, stress, health, wellbeing · 15 February 2021
Tags: stressstressriskassessmentmentalhealthburnout
This is one of the questions I have been asked because of the major changes we have all had to make since March 2020 due to the Coronavirus pandemic. There is little or no travel to and from work and some people do not have a suitable space to work effectively in. with little or no interaction with work colleagues, staff can feel vulnerable, frightened about their health and of their loved ones as well as for the future and their job.

Some organisations are carrying out a Wellbeing survey which sounds a good idea but what will they be able to do with the results as most people are working from home.

If you have a small team and you would like to find out how they are getting on as far as stress, their mental health and potentially burnout then it would be very useful to ask each of them either to complete a short questionnaire or ask them questions around the six Management Standards.

Some examples of the questions you could ask individually either by video or phone call could be:

·         Demands – do you feel you have too much or too little to do? Is your home workspace suitable to work in?

·         Control – are you able to work the hours you usually do, or would you prefer more flexible hours to meet your current                               responsibilities?

·         Support – are you getting enough support from your manager and work colleagues?

·         Change – how are you coping with working from home?

·         Relationships – do you speak often enough with work colleagues and your manager/team leader?

·         Role – do you have a clear work plan since working from home?

Once you have collated the results, you could complete a Stress Risk Assessment with an action plan. This will ensure that you have a clear plan with timescales going forward. It is essential that you plan and prepare for the future as there could be major challenges to deal with once the lockdown has been lifted such as higher levels of sickness absence, stress, and burnout.

Please get in touch here if you would like more information around support to carry out a Stress Risk Assessment and if you would like to have an informal chat on the phone.

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