These Chicago Companies Are Setting the Pace for a Healthy Workplace

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, advocates from three companies share how their organizations are stopping stigma and prioritizing well-being in the workplace.

Written by Mia Goulart
Published on May. 13, 2024
These Chicago Companies Are Setting the Pace for a Healthy Workplace
Image: Shutterstock
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The mental health crisis is real — and it’s happening right now. 

Fifty percent of employees percent will be affected at some point. But fostering a culture of mental well-being doesn’t need to be complex or costly. Prioritizing well-being pays. By creating an environment that values mental health, companies can experience heightened employee engagement, reduced stress, lower healthcare expenses, successful talent acquisition and more. 

For SteelSeries, a successful mental health support program starts with empathy, said Global Head of People and Culture Mike Keller. 

“We’re taking the slogan ‘stop the stigma’ to heart,” said Keller. 

Per HSA Bank’s Health & Wealth Index, the percentage of employers offering mental health care increased to 27 percent, up from 23 percent in 2022 — significant, considering that 92 percent of workers deem it a make or break when considering a new job opportunity. 

 

THE IMPORTANCE OF BENEFITS

HSA Bank’s Health & Wellness Index reported that 61% of those in Gen Z and 51% of millennials would change employers due to improved benefits.

Also among the companies stopping the stigma are Accelerated Digital Media and Hireology. Recently, Built In Chicago sat down with advocates from each to learn how they’re supporting their workforce’s mental well-being, not just this month but year round.

 

 

Mike Keller
Global Head of People and Culture • SteelSeries

SteelSeries is a global leader in hardware and software for gaming.

 

HOW STEELSERIES INVESTS IN EMPLOYEE WELL-BEING

  • Mental Health Awareness Group: SteelSeries ApS has established a dedicated mental health awareness group where employees can openly discuss their needs, share events and explore tools to support their well-being.
  • Subscription Services: SteelSeries ApS provides subscription services such as Calm for sleep and meditation, as well as Unmind, a platform designed to manage mental health issues like stress and anxiety. 
  • Unmind Talk: Through Unmind Talk, SteelSeries ApS offers free therapy sessions conducted in local languages, eliminating barriers typically associated with employee assistance programs and ensuring swift access to support services within as little as two days.

 

How has your company adapted or expanded your benefits offerings to support employees’ needs and meet them where they are?

I personally had to navigate mental health issues after the sudden passing of my father, and the lack of support in my former workplace created a cycle of absenteeism and presenteeism that deeply affected my career. The last few years have been unprecedented, however, employee needs are being recognized in a way they haven’t been before, and it’s promising that we’re moving in the right direction. 

In addition to providing tools and therapy for employees, we’re looking into multiple new platforms including one that utilizes counseling through gaming. 

 

 

Melanie Scheer
Director of People Operations • Accelerated Digital Media

Accelerated Digital Media is a performance marketing agency specializing in paid media management for D2C digital health and e-commerce companies.

 

HOW ACCELERATED DIGITAL MEDIA INVESTS IN EMPLOYEE WELL-BEING

  • Flexible Schedule: ADM transitioned to complete remote work last summer, unlike many companies that still required employees to be onsite. 
  • Utilization of Collaboration Tools: To maintain high engagement levels, ADM utilizes various collaboration tools such as Slack, Monday.com and the Google Suite.
  • Incorporation of “Human Breaks”: ADM addresses the challenges of a packed schedule by incorporating breaks throughout the day, an initiative that includes starting meetings five minutes past the hour to allow time for stretching, spending time with pets or loved ones or simply looking away from screens.
  • Comprehensive Health Benefits Package: ADM offers an extensive health benefits package that includes various resources to support the mental and physical well-being of team members.

 

How has your company adapted or expanded your benefits offerings to support employees’ needs and meet them where they are?

As a company deeply committed to fostering innovation, we actively seek input from our team to enhance our processes and offerings. We believe in a culture of continuous improvement and annually reassess our benefits to ensure they meet the evolving needs of our employees. This commitment extends to our health and wellness initiatives. 

Our comprehensive health benefits package encompasses resources to support our team members’ mental and physical well-being. We also recently introduced a financial wellness plan that provides individuals and their partners with personalized, confidential financial consultations, designed to align with each team member’s unique financial goals.

Furthermore, we recognize the importance of work-life balance and prioritize the well-being of our team by offering unlimited PTO. While we encourage our employees to take advantage of this benefit, we also mandate a minimum of two weeks off each year to ensure they have ample opportunity to recharge. 

 

 

Dina Fox
People Business Partner • Hireology

Hireology is the only applicant tracking system built for sourcing, engaging, and hiring talent at multi-location businesses.

 

HOW HIREOLOGY INVESTS IN EMPLOYEE WELL-BEING

  • Monthly Mental Health Days: Hireology prioritizes employee well-being by encouraging all employees to take one day a month to focus solely on themselves. 
  • Quarterly Focus on Mental Health: Hireology dedicates an entire quarter to mental health, sponsoring employee-led panels, providing resources for seeking therapy and hosting webinars focused on mental health topics chosen by employees.

 

How has your company adapted or expanded your benefits offerings to support employees’ needs and meet them where they are?

Over the years we have made some impactful changes to our benefit offerings. We now offer access to the employee healthcare navigation platform, HealthJoy which helps employees make better decisions regarding their medical care. Employees also receive an annual subscription to the Calm app to support their physical and mental well-being. In addition, we enjoy bringing employees together with initiatives like the Hireology Walking Club, which encourages employees to share their daily steps and workouts.

 

 

Responses have been edited for length and clarity. Images provided by Shutterstock and listed companies.

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