Make The World A Happier Place

Are you a voluntary organisation who wants to improve working life for employees suffering with mental health problems? Then we would like your help.


Mindful Employer Leeds Evaluation – Why be involved?
What is Mindful Employer? It’s an initiative supporting employers to take a positive attitude towards mental health in the workplace; part of the national Mindful Employer framework and delivered by Leeds Mind for the Leeds city region and funded by Leeds NHS CCG.

Key elements:

Charter – the national framework for Mindful Employer and organisations pledge a commitment to the guiding principles –

Network – connect to professionals from over 80 companies in the Leeds area. 

Events – learn from experts and ask the questions you want to for free in a safe and supportive environment. 

Steering Group – guides the initiative and provides expertise on mental health, the law & HR. 

Mindful Employer officer – dedicated resource to support the initiative in Leeds and can provide support, information, ideas and signposting. 

Local support – public, private and voluntary sector organisations and mental health resources in Leeds.

Who’s it for?

CEOs/ MDs, HR Directors, line managers, wellbeing or occupational health managers, health professionals, mental health workers, public sector, private sector and voluntary sector.

Why the focus on mental health?

Mental ill-health costs UK  employers an estimated £30 billion per year (HSE 2013). According to the CIPD, 38% of employers have experienced a rise in sickness absence due to stress, anxiety or depression since the 2008 crash. Presenteeism and high turnover due to mental health issues can also be costly consequences of not addressing staff wellbeing. Yet the CIPD found only 20% of employers focused on employee wellbeing during the recession. But taking steps to change this can be simple – and needn’t cost a thing. By taking a positive attitude to mental health, employers can take immediate action to reduce these costs.  

Why are we undertaking an evaluation?

As a publicly-funded initiative it’s important that we are able to demonstrate and evidence change in organisations through the support and guidance provided by Leeds Mind. We also intend that the evaluation process will help tailor the future work of Mindful Employer Leeds for the organisations involved in the Network.  

What is the scope of the evaluation?

Mindful Employer Leeds has received funding to provide dedicated and tailored support and training to three Leeds based employers. In order to fully understand the impact and value of this additional resource, we have decided to commission an external academic evaluation. The purpose is to implement or develop measurement tools, undertake an evaluation and to produce interim and final evaluation reports that assess the Mindful Employer Leeds service model, the baseline of current activity and how well the aim of - “Embed Mindful Employer in the Leeds city region and promote good practice around mental health in the workplace in a meaningful and sustainable way which appeals directly to employers” is met.  

The evaluation will involve three employers across the city of Leeds  – 1 x public, private and voluntary; at least one SME; at least one with a higher ratio of male than female employees.

Why should my organisation be a part of the evaluation?

Right now 1 in 6 workers is dealing with a mental health problem such as anxiety, depression or a stress-related illness. This can prevent people performing at their best. Simple, inexpensive measures to support staff mental health and wellbeing can: Increase productivity, efficiency and innovation. Reduce business costs, resulting in increased profits. Improve staff morale and performance. Reduce sickness absence and staff turnover and discourage presenteeism. 

Enhance your reputation as an employer, satisfy your duty of care and bolster your position in case of legal challenge Mindful Employer Leeds provides support to 100 organisations around the city through its website, newsletter and events. By being a part of the evaluation your organisation will not only access these services but others tailored to your workplace such as mental health awareness training, analysis of your workforce, a bespoke action plan and signposting of resources for employees. Through the evaluation we should be able to assess the business case for employee wellbeing and good mental health in your organisation. We’ll also be able to demonstrate any changes and benefits to the workforce as a result of the project e.g. better mental health, increased engagement.

Mindful Employer Leeds is only working with three organisations in this dedicated and tailored way.

What are the timescales?

Recruitment of the research team is currently taking place and will be complete in August. The aim is to partner with the three organisations during the summer and hold a project initiation meeting in September. The evaluation will run for a year from October 2015 – September 2016.

What would be the commitment if we were involved?

There’s no financial commitment to be involved; the resources required at the outset are access to organisational information, permission to run employee engagement surveys (or analyse data from existing ones) and a dedicated point of contact (preferably a manager in the HR or wellbeing team). The likely time commitment would be 1 x 2.5 hour project initiation meeting; 10 x 1.5 hour monthly project meetings and 1 x 3 hour project. Other time commitments will depend on the nature of the organisation and its own needs. As the project evolves there may be other requirements but in the spirit of collaboration these would be raised by Leeds Mind or the organisation through one of the regular project meetings and are likely to be agreed to if they are within the agreed project scope.

Who do I contact to be involved?

Please email Vanessa on or call on 0113 230 2361.