Wellbeing and customer service

Posted on: 09/10/2019

Wellbeing is important to develop trust and drive a positive customer experience. It’s possible to train people to deliver outstanding customer service, but without a strong sense of wellbeing that would be difficult to sustain.

So in National Customer Service Week, and ahead of World Mental Health Day, we're reminding colleagues of the wellbeing opportunities on offer.

These include Canine Calming sessions, and a new E-Learning programme. As a business we are working hard to make things as accessible as possible for our diverse team: Working from Wrexham to Redruth, with colleagues from 16-72 years old.

Our focus on wellbeing is driven not only by our moral obligation to keep our colleagues safe, but also by our commitment to the communities that rely on us. 

This is a particular challenge in our Operations team, where 90% are male, and most under the age of 45.

‘Pale and male’ is a rather uncharitable term often applied to workforces like ours, but it has a very real impact where mental health is concerned. 77% of men have suffered from anxiety or stress, with work being the most significant driver of that. And 36% of men say they don’t talk about their mental health because they ‘don’t want to be a burden.’

Our own figures show that occupational health referrals for mental health issues have more than doubled in the last few years. Our action has been direct and as targeted as it would be for any other form of health risk.

We now manage colleagues’ mental health activity – just like we do for physical health. We know colleagues experience stress at home, but work stress can tip the balance. So we’ve changed our performance management processes, making sure they are positive and achievable, with support in place where intervention is necessary.

We are committed to looking after our colleagues’ wellbeing. While it provides us with new challenges, we’re confident that by approaching them in the same way that has seen us become the preeminent network for safety, we will be able to address them. Our hardworking engineers and the communities we serve deserve nothing less.  

Rob Long

Wales & West Utilities Director of Operations