A comprehensive new study suggests deteriorating employee mental health has a great impact on a company’s success. 

At least it is catching the attention of employers.

The Hartford’s 2022 Future of Benefits Study polled more than 500 employers and 1,000 employees in the U.S. at the start of February. 

Nearly three-quarters (71%) of employers said they feel the mental health of their workforce is having a negative financial impact on their company. 

Mental Health Offerings

Researchers also found a disconnect between the mental health support employers think they provide and what employees actually feel. 

According to the study, the number of workers reporting feeling depressed or anxious on a weekly basis has increased by 14% since 2020. 

The number of workers reporting feeling depressed or anxious has increased by 14% since 2020.

While many companies are offering new and creative benefits to attract employees, the study found fewer employers are offering employee assistance programs, wellness benefits, and addiction treatments in 2022 than they were in 2020.

“Our data shows an undeniable, direct correlation between employee mental well-being, mental health support, and the impact to a company’s bottom line,” said The Hartford’s chair and CEO Christopher Swift.

Shift

Employees appear to be seeing the shift.

  • 82% of employers said their workforce has more access to mental health resources than in previous years, compared to 50% of workers
  • 80% of employers said workers have flexibility in their schedule to get the mental health help they need, compared to 53% of workers
  • 79% of employers said mental health had improved thanks to the company’s resources, compared to 35% of workers

Mental health stigmas continue to be a concern too.

More than three-fourths of employers believe leaders at their company encourage mental health conversations, but only half of the workforce agreed. 

Philanthropic Efforts

In an effort to show their dedication to improved efforts, the Hartford is renewing its partnership with the National Alliance on Mental Illness. 

“Employers who want a contemporary, inclusive workplace that supports its people should proactively invest in mental health, with an eye to empathy and equity,” said Swift.

"Employers who want a contemporary, inclusive workplace should proactively invest in mental health."

The Hartford's Chris Swift

During Mental Health Awareness Month in May, the Hartford vowed to match NAMI donations up to $200,000. 

The company also committed to helping leaders create stigma-free organizations through research and events.