United Kingdom


Mental health is a significant issue for businesses. It can increase presenteeism and absence, negatively impact productivity, morale and engagement, and it costs UK employers up to £42 billion a year1.

Contemporary drivers of mental health

Poor mental health at work is widespread - 48% of employees have experienced a mental health problem in their current job and only half have talked to their employer about it, and as many as a quarter of employees are struggling in silence2.

(Annual cost of mental health issues to UK businesses across all industries)

Download ‘The Contemporary Drivers of Mental Health Paper’

There is a huge opportunity for employers to manage and support mental health at work.

Employers can be a big part of the solution with mental health assessments - helping to prevent issues, detecting any problems early, providing rapid interventions, and supporting employees who have longer-term issues such as anxiety and depression. To do this, employers need to understand how to recognise and address the mental health challenges facing their employees.

What’s driving mental health issues?

Beyond the broad factors that influence us all, there are a wide range of drivers that can contribute to or cause mental health problems. Some of these issues can still be seen as taboo, discouraging employees to talk about mental health at work. This often means a doubling of the culture of silence around mental health, and an even greater negative impact on people’s lives and mental state.

The Contemporary Drivers of Mental Health Paper

Aon’s latest paper takes a deeper look into the drivers of poor mental health with some mental health at work statistics. We have selected a range of contemporary and taboo influencers to highlight the dynamic nature of our mental health, and to illustrate the need for a broader, more comprehensive approach to improving emotional wellbeing through the workplace.

Our paper explores the following taboo drivers of mental health and gives practical guidance to employers about building a strategy to improve mental health in the workplace.

  • Divorce & separation
  • 24/7 culture and the impact on sleep
  • Working carers
  • Drugs, alcohol and addiction
  • Gender dysphoria

Download ‘The Contemporary Drivers of Mental Health Paper’

1Thriving at Work: The Stevenson/Farmer review of mental health and employers, October 2017

2Survey of more than 44,000 employees by mental health charity, Mind


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