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New mental health standard to be introduced this summer

The arrival of a new ISO standard, ISO 45003, this summer will put the management of psychological health and safety and psychosocial risk firmly in the spotlight. It is currently available in draft format, so those responsible for the mental health and wellbeing of employees have the opportunity to bring themselves up to speed with its requirements.

What is ISO 45003?
ISO 45003 is the first global standard giving practical guidance on managing psychological health in the workplace. It provides guidance on the management of psychosocial risk, as part of an occupational health and safety management system.

It includes:

  • Information on how to recognise the psychosocial hazards that can affect workers, such as those that arise from home working.
  • Examples of effective – often simple - actions that can be taken to manage these and improve employee wellbeing.

Who is it for?
ISO 45003 is written to help organisations using an occupational health and safety management system based on ISO 45001 Occupational Health and Safety

It will also be useful for organisations that haven't yet implemented an occupational health and safety management system, enabling them to develop an approach to mental health at work that supports mental health for everyone, allocating responsibility for mental health within the workplace.

ISO 45003 is currently at the 'draft' stage (Draft International Standard (DIS)), which means that it is 95% technically accurate, so the core content will not change. This means that organisations can start using the standard now to help protect and support workers from mental ill health arising within the workplace. It is expected that DIS/ISO 45003 will be published as a full International Standard in summer 2021.

Why ISO 45003 is good for your organisation
Supporting mental health within your organisation has never been more important. As well as helping you to build a positive working environment, a framework for managing psychological health and safety can help to improve your organisational resilience and enhance performance and productivity.

Other benefits include:

  • High levels of discretionary effort.
  • Improved recruitment, retention and diversity.
  • Enhanced worker engagement.
  • Increased innovation.
  • Legal compliance.
  • Reduced absence from workplace stress, burnout, anxiety and depression.

Find more information here.