Skanska, one of the UK’s leading contractors, is an inclusive and responsible business that is helping to build for a better society. Known for major projects, such as the Gherkin and Crossrail, we are building, upgrading and maintaining the country’s infrastructure. Drawing on our Scandinavian heritage, we are green, innovative and progressive. We bring together people and technology, as part of our quest to make construction a safer and more collaborative industry.
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How would you describe your organisation's role in contributing to the delivery of these outcomes to reducing suicide and improving support for those bereaved or affected by suicide?
Skanska UK is committed to raise mental health awareness throughout the business and our contractors. We have a mental health and wellbeing strategy which has 4 strands: leadership, building capability, employee voice and resource availability and reach.
· We signed the ‘time to change commitment’ in February 2016
· Our CEO has made mental health a key focus area in our strategic plans
· Collaborate across the industry to raise the topic and mental health literacy eg HiCLG, Mates in Mind
· Developing our Post incident plan so we are prepared as a business to respond to the immediacy and longer term implications of suicide in the workplace
· Will facilitate a series of workshops for our supply chain to help them start their mental wellbeing journey. We provide the free health expertise and resources to get going.
· Collaborated with MIND to develop suicide Awareness workshops for our managers and HR
· We have trained over 350 people in mental health ‘lite’ awareness in past 18 months, with 225 of these employees being MH Ambassadors
· Introduced a work impact questionnaire to identify individuals and teams who might be experiencing work stress
· A mental health ‘stand up’ where the whole organisation stops work and a leader will facilitate a conversation and activities to encourage people to talk about mental health
· Time to Talk events are held twice a year so we can encourage people to have a conversation about mental health issues and know where resources can be found
· Resources developed around talking about suicide for managers, Let’s talk about suicide – how a business recovers workshop, 24/7 EAP service
What are the current challenges to delivering these outcomes from the perspective of your organisation?
Mental health is a new subject to the construction industry which has become an increasing area of attention due to the latest research that tells us the construction is a vulnerable sector.
The typical workforce are male, peripatetic and have an average age of 43 years – all these factors will influence the reach and success of our programme.
Additionally, communication routes are limited to tool box talks at operative level which is reliant on the subject being of interest to the presenter (typically a supervisor) and confident to talk about the subject.
We are probably more enabled than many organisations with not only the infrastructure but heath expertise – we believe that we can support smaller organisations to build their mental health literacy and will do this through our facilitated workshops with the supply chain in 2018.