Rachael Porthouse
May 4, 2024
Mental Health

Psychosocial Risks in the Workplace: What Are They and How to Address Them

As pockets of stress begin to grow in our everyday lives, it is important to reflect on how it impacts our workplaces, specifically the people within them.

Psychosocial risks are factors in the workplace that can negatively impact employees’ mental health and well-being. They include things like high workload, poor job design, low job control, workplace harassment, and discrimination.

Why is this important?

Psychosocial risks have significant impacts on both employees and organisations. For employees, exposure to psychosocial risks can lead to poor mental and physical health outcomes, reduced job satisfaction and performance. For organisations, the costs of psychosocial risks can include reduced productivity, increased absenteeism, and increased staff turnover.

Recent law changes in NSW

On the 1st of October 2022, NSW amended the WHS laws introducing a positive duty for employers to manage and minimise psychosocial risks in the workplace The new laws require employers to identify and manage psychosocial risks, just like they would physical risks, meaning that employers must take active steps to prevent and reduce psychosocial risks in the workplace. 

Here are some tips to help reduce psychosocial risks in the workplace:

1. Be proactive: Implement effective control measures reduce or eliminate these psychosocial risks. This could include things like providing training and support to employees, improving job design, increasing job control, and addressing workplace harassment and discrimination.

2. Foster a positive workplace culture: Create a workplace culture that supports positive mental health outcomes for employees. This could include things like promoting work-life balance, encouraging open communication, and providing opportunities for professional development.

3. Monitor and review: Regularly monitor and review the effectiveness of your control measures and make adjustments as necessary. This can help ensure that you are effectively managing psychosocial risks in the workplace.

Psychosocial risks are an important issue in the workplace that can have a significant impact on employees’ mental and physical health and it vital organisations take proactive steps to eliminate or reduce these hazards. By taking steps to identify and manage these risks, employers can create a safer and healthier workplace for their employees.

Confidential consultation

We offer an initial, confidential appointment tailored to address your questions and guide you in the right direction, whether you're embarking on a new HR journey or seeking expert advice and guidance on complex workplace issues.

This allows us to learn about your business goals and objectives; and for you to get to know our team and how we can support you to achieve those goals.

Our sessions are designed to:

  • understand your specific questions, covering your current situation, potential challenges in culture, behaviour, performance, diversity or inclusion, and any other concerns you may have.
  • Collaboratively assess your current landscape and outline actionable steps towards meaningful change, providing assurance and support along the way.
  • Most importantly establish a foundation for working together. We want you to feel confident that we are the right HR partner for you, because this is your business’ future you are about to invest in, so we need to get it right. 

We look forward to meeting you.

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