Understanding Behavioral Health
in the workplace

A Growing Problem Without A Growing Solution

Our country has a mental health problem. In fact, almost 1 in 5 (19.1%) Americans have experienced a mental health condition.1 The fastest growing problem areas are depression and opioid use, as well as suicidal thoughts, plans and attempts.

Americans suffer from a behavioral health or substance abuse condition1


Not Just A Societal Problem –
A Workplace Problem

of employees have taken a disability leave for a mental health condition

of employers have received a request to accommodate drug addiction in the last year

of all LTD claims are mental health related 2

Mental health and substance abuse are issues employers are facing, and will continue to face. So why are companies finding it difficult to find solutions for these problems?

These challenges leave employers with little confidence

Workers hiding their conditions, fearing the stigma - 64%

Managers unable to recognize behavioral health conditions - 52%

Difficulty understanding permanence of symptoms - 47%

Prejudice against those with mental health conditions - 30%

Lack of knowledge accommodating mental health conditions - 26%

Top 5 employer challenges in accommodating behavioral health conditions

Together, these challenges lead to lack of confidence by employers. Less than 1/3 feel very confident accommodating the mental health and drug addiction issues of their employees. So it's not just the employees in need of help. It's also the employers.

 of employers feel very confident accommodating employee mental health conditions

Mental Health Disability Leaves: 
2x Longer 3

the cost of behavioral health conditions is high

Behavioral health-related claims can be lengthy and costly. Employers aren't sure what they can do to combat these issues. Only 10% of employers even offer basic behavioral health assessments. And when employee mental health isn't addressed, leaves get longer and costs rise.

Costs associated with an employee's mood disorder 4

Average annual cost HR managers say they incur having extended job vacancies 5

The right partner helps you find the right solutions

Finding the right carrier partner is the best way to start supporting the mental health of your employees. A disability carrier's involvement in stay-at-work and return-to-work plans increases employees' use of workplace resources by 22%.3 The more employees feel supported, the better they feel about their employer.

  • Create a stigma-free workplace through education and training
  • Provide communication from leadership that clearly addresses behavioral health issues
  • Encourage employees to disclose issues early so they can be properly addressed
  • Assist employees in coordinating treatment and obtaining mental health services
  • Find creative ways to accommodate the individual mental health needs of employees

Working with the right carrier can help you:


Learn More

All statistics from the Absence and Disability Readiness Index report unless otherwise noted. Source: Absence and Disability Readiness Index report, The Standard, November 2018, based on survey conducted by Versta Research.

1 SAMHSA, Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality, National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2018.

2 IBI Health and Productivity Benchmarking 2018.

3 Employee Disability Leave Study, The Link Between Disability Management and Employee Productivity, The Standard, May 2018, standard.com/eforms/19911.pdf. Note: The survey excluded employees who had filed a workers' compensation claim excuslively as a result of their illness or injury or who took maternity leave.

4 Cost of excess health care treatments and lost work time per every 1,000 U.S. employees. Source: Integrated Benefits Institute. Health and Productivity Impact of Chronic Conditions: Mood Disorders. August 2017.

5 CareerBuilder Press Release. Apr 13 2017. The Skills Gap is Costing Companies Nearly $1 Million Annually.

The Standard is a marketing name for StanCorp Financial Group, Inc. and subsidiaries. Insurance products are offered by Standard Insurance Company of Portlamd, Oregon in all states except New York. Product features and availability vary by state and are solely the responsibility of Standard Insurance Company.

© 2019 StanCorp Financial Group, Inc.

of employers have received a request to accommodate a mental health condition in the last year

 of employers feel very confident accommodating employee drug addiction