Engineers take leading role in tackling stress

Cummins Engineering has introduced a range of policies to tackle stress in
the workplace following an increase in the number of workers taking time off
because of it.

The Darlington-based company, which employs 4,500 staff, has used employee surveys,
on-site anti-harassment advisers and an employee assistance programme to
identify and address stress.

The firm also has a specific policy on how people should treat each other at
work. It places great importance on team-based working and getting the physical
environment correct to prevent stress occurring in the first place.

Alastair O’Riordan, manager of employee relations at the firm, emphasised
that it did not introduce the stress management policies to comply with the new
HSE standards, but to create a more efficient workplace.

"I think this is part of running an efficient business. It is not being
done for the feel good factor – there is a business case for addressing these

"We were aware that stress standards were being introduced, but
compliance was not our intention. We wanted to improve tackling stress in the
workplace," he said.

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