Mental Health Awareness Week

As it’s Mental Health Awareness Week, a big shout out to Storm – Head of Wellbeing at Flat Fee Recruiter!  

Storm is our MD’s dog, and we like to think of her as part of our wider family here at the company.

Storm doesn’t know she’s a dog – the conversations she tries to have with us are always hilarious. However, she definitely knows she’s Head of Wellbeing and takes her job very seriously. 

She’s always keeping spirits high in the office and available for a hug whenever it’s needed!  

 

Having a dog in the office can have lots of benefits for your workforce, including:

1. Reduced stress levels Storm loves a hug, and it’s good for us too: petting a dog for just 10 minutes is proven to help reduce stress. In fact, studies have found that when we hug our dogs our bodies release the stress-reducing hormone oxytocin.

2. Better teamwork Dogs brighten up the atmosphere around the office which can in turn increase morale. They can also encourage better interaction between teams.

3. Encouraging regular breaks & increased productivity Dogs need food, walks, playtime etc, and by encouraging your staff to take an active role in looking after the dog you help ensure they’re not chained to their desks, allowing them to recharge and, ultimately, increasing productivity.

4. Increased staff retention Allowing employees to bring in their dogs helps create a more relaxed & welcoming environment in the workplace – and when staff enjoy coming into the office, they’re less likely to look elsewhere for employment.   

5. Helping you stand out as a great employer An office dog is a fantastic USP – Everyone we interview remembers our recruitment ads because of Storm!

 

Storm is a bit of an influencer – you can follow her adventures here https://www.instagram.com/storm_office_dog/ 

 

This year, Mental Health Awareness Week is raising awareness on the subject of loneliness. There is no single cause or solution for mental health issues, but as a responsible employer you can provide support for staff who are experiencing difficulties with their mental health.

The Mental Health Foundation share fantastic information through its @Mentalhealth account on Twitter.

To find out more about how pets can benefit mental health visit https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/a-to-z/p/pets-and-mental-health 

To donate to the charity https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/get-involved/ways-to-donate 

 

Pets in the workplace policy

Of course, not everyone is a ‘dog person’, so it’s important you have robust policies in place to make sure your staff and your pets enjoy a positive workplace environment.

If you’re thinking about having a dog in the workplace, here are 10 important factors to consider:

1. Do you have space for dog-free areas?

2. Is your dog well trained? Consider a short trial to see if they are suited to the workplace

3. Lots of staff might want to bring their dogs into the office at once, but you should think about suitable limits to the number and type of dogs allowed at work

4. You must provide proof that pets are clean and vaccinated

5. It’s also important to ensure that the pet will not cause allergies or other medical issues for your staff

6. Constant supervision of pets is essential! 

7. Any health and safety hazards

8. Will having pets in the office affect any rental agreements with the landlords?

9. Complaint procedures. 

10. Type of establishment you operate in – some working environments are not suitable for pets, i.e. kitchen, sensitive equipment, labs etc.

 

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