Employers are facing increasing pressure to evaluate and monitor the wellbeing of their staff, but this presents significant methodological challenges. Let’s say you’re a manager and you want to monitor the mental health and wellbeing of your employees (as required in the Standard for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace, for example), but how do you define and measure ‘wellness’? What data do you gather? And, perhaps most importantly, how do you know what you’re doing is (or isn’t) working?
Our presentation focuses on assessment, and is intended for anyone – in any field – who has an interest in monitoring the mental health and wellbeing of their employees. First, we talk about the importance of identifying and defining meaningful targets. Second, we draw on quantitative techniques to take the audience through the methodological issues of gathering data (i.e., through surveys, screening tools, administrative databases, etc.), evaluating and interpreting trends, and assessing the impact of interventions. Third, we talk about the role and use of qualitative research techniques in gathering rich descriptions to leverage and engage the lived experiences of employees. Finally, we discuss how to incorporate both quantitative and qualitative data in holistic, mixed methods evaluations of employee mental health.
Elizabeth Donnelly, PhD, MPH, LICSW, NREMT, FAEMS
Dr. Elizabeth Donnelly is an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Windsor. She holds a PhD in Social Work from Florida State University, as well as a Master of Social Work and Master of Public Health from the University of Minnesota. Dr. Donnelly’s primary research interest is in workforce mental health issues in paramedicine. You can follow Dr. Donnelly on Twitter @EDonnellyPhD.
Justin Mausz, ACP, PhD(c)
Justin Mausz is an Advanced Care Paramedic with Peel Regional Paramedic Services, and a PhD Candidate in the Department of Health Research Methods, Evidence, and Impact at McMaster University. Justin’s research uses mixed methods approaches, including rigorous qualitative research techniques, to explore the sociocultural issues of workplace mental health among paramedics. Follow Justin on Twitter @Prof_Dewey.