It’s not uncommon to struggle with your mental health. Often, these struggles make it difficult for veterans to successfully integrate into a new workplace. A recent study found that 69% of veterans find it difficult to hold down a job due to mental health issues.
Thankfully, a veteran-friendly workplace usually has bespoke resources to support their ex-military community, in which case, it’s a matter of knowing where to look for help and finding the courage to address your difficulties. Veterans are no strangers to courage, and they don’t have to suffer in silence.
How can you help your veteran talent fight the unseen battles? Your people mustn’t suffer in silence. Here are some of the ways you can become a more inclusive employer and improve your level of support for your veteran community.
Employee Engagement Groups
Employee Engagement Groups (EEGs) are good platforms for helping your people meet mentors, get advice from their fellow employees, and share their thoughts in a safe environment. EEGs work best when they’re led by employees, have an allocated budget, and receive buy-in from senior leadership.
The stigma around mental health is an ongoing problem that tends to intensify bad situations. A lot of the time, this stigma is a result of ignorance and deep-rooted societal bias. Learning more about the veteran experience is a great way to raise awareness about their unique challenges in the workplace. There are plenty of ways you can start to spread awareness and educate your workforce, even on the most testing topics, including:
Mental Health First Aiders
Designated mental health first-aiders are visible points of contact for anyone struggling in the workplace – following training, any member of staff can take on this role (they don’t necessarily have to be from the HR function).
Veteran-friendly policies, alongside adding value to your business’s employer value proposition, can help create a happier, healthier culture for your veterans, particularly if you take the time to create policies targeted to your veteran talent. For example, guaranteed interview schemes, extended leave for reservists, flexible working arrangements, skills translation programmes, and community leave.
Subsidised Mental Health Care
Whether it’s a lack of financial resources, time, or understanding, professional mental health services can prove difficult to access. As an employer, offering subsidised private mental health care can be a great way to support your staff, regardless of their veteran status.
Need practical, customised support? Let our team know – we’re happy to help anyone hoping to create a better working world for veterans. We feel the same way.