APA Center for Organizational Excellence: Creating a Psychologically Healthy Workplace

Resources for Employers

Introduction

A psychologically healthy workplace fosters employee health and well-being while enhancing organizational performance and productivity.

Psychologically healthy workplace practices can be grouped into five categories:

Click on the links above for more information about the different types of psychologically healthy workplace practices.

It is important to note that there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to creating a psychologically healthy workplace. Success is based, in part, on addressing the challenges unique to your particular organization and tailoring programs and policies to meet your needs.

Communication also plays a key role in the success of any workplace program or policy and serves as the foundation for all five types of psychologically healthy workplace practices. Click here for information about how communication helps achieve the desired outcomes for the employee and the organization.

In today’s 24/7 society, workplace pressures continue to mount. Productivity demands, information overload and increasing pressure to balance work and home lives can take a toll on employees’ health, well-being and job satisfaction.

According to a national public opinion poll conducted by the American Psychological Association, two-thirds of both men and women say work has a significant impact on their stress level, and one in four has called in sick or taken a “mental health day” as a result of work stress. Also a significant concern for employers, job stress is estimated to cost U.S. industry $300 billion a year in absenteeism, diminished productivity, employee turnover and direct medical, legal and insurance fees.

Faced with skyrocketing healthcare costs, global competition and economic uncertainty, employers are concerned about attracting and retaining high-quality employees and keeping up morale. Minimizing workplace stress plays a significant role in the employee retention equation as organizations look to optimize their human capital.

Some companies have responded to these business challenges by taking care of their employees. These employers are creating workplaces that do more than just improve productivity – they build a strong, vibrant organizational culture that supports the company itself. In short, they build a psychologically healthy workplace.

"As a result of our focus on creating a good working environment, ARUP has enjoyed high morale and productivity, low turnover and absenteeism, enhanced recruitment and retention, and positive customer relations."

Carl R. Kjeldsberg, M.D.
CEO and Chairmain of the Board
ARUP Laboratories, Past Winner, Utah