Stress Risk Management Working Group


Purpose of our work together

Created in May 2018, the University Stress Risk Management Working Group (SRMWG) is a sub group of the University Health & Safety Committee and comprises members from Human Resources, Health & Safety and the campus Trade Unions. It is tasked with proactively embedding stress risk management across the University and ensuring its mitigation is considered at the earliest opportunity. Members work together to ensure stress risk assessment becomes a proactive exercise between Health & Safety, campus Trade Unions and Human Resources, together with senior leaders in the University.

The group is chaired in turn by Health & Safety, Human Resources and the campus Trade Unions and discussions between all parties have been very positive in the context of encouraging and facilitating overall wellbeing amongst staff.

The group reports to the University Health and Safety Committee to ensure significant issues are given full consideration and action is taken where required.

The group reports to the University Health and Safety Committee to ensure significant issues are given full consideration and action is taken where required.


Recent Projects - Stress Risk Assessment Pilot

Most recently the SRMWG have focussed on reviewing available methodology and tools to best assess and manage stress at an organisational and individual level.

With reference to the Health and Safety Executive stress management standards, the group designed a Stress Risk Assessment & Action Plan template and guidance to support departments in reflecting on the results of the workplace stress reports produced from the 2018 staff survey, assessing the risk of (potential) stressors and creating suitable action plans.

Following analysis of the workplace stress reports, the group identified 11 departments representing a variety of working environments and different scores across the staff survey stress indicator questions to participate in a pilot of the template and the guidance.

This pilot, started in June 2019 has now concluded and the feedback and findings have been reviewed with subsequent refinements made to the template and guidance. These documents are now available for any interested departments or teams to download from the right hand side of this page.

For departments and teams using the template, it is recommended that the completed Stress Risk Assessment and Action Plan is added as a standing item on meeting and committee agendas to enable regular review of progress and updates to be captured.


Example Initiatives from Pilot

Throughout the pilot a number of departments shared examples of their own proactive work to consider stress risk management including the following;

Pulse Surveys: to enable regular assessment of staff wellbeing alongside the main staff survey and provide up to date feedback on any interventions undertaken to mitigate against stress or other factors.

Wellbeing Discussions: including staff away days, dedicated wellbeing forums and stress awareness task and finish groups to enable a collective focus on wellbeing and development of departmental initiatives.

Initiatives will continue to be added to this page so please keep checking back for further information.


Other Projects we are Working on

Using the learning from the pilot we aim to focus on the following;

  1. Reviewing the training provision around stress and resilience.
  2. Researching and developing a Personal Wellbeing Assessment as an additional tool.
  3. Continuing the current work to review and refresh the Stress Risk Management Policy and Guidance to ensure it is fit for purpose.
  4. Reviewing the use of the staff survey as a stress risk assessment tool.

Useful Resources


Contact Details

SRMG Member Job Title Email
Hannah Morgan Head of Organisational Development h.j.morgan@sheffield.ac.uk
Beverley Gouldsbrough Deputy Director of Health & Safety b.gouldsbrough@sheffield.ac.uk
Emily Faulds OD Advider, Projects e.faulds@sheffield.ac.uk
Louise Mackay HR Manager, Projects l.mackay@sheffield.ac.uk
Mick Ashman Senior University Teacher/ Director of Learning and Teaching (UCU) m.ashman@sheffield.ac.uk
Yvonne Stephenson Lead Development Technician (Unite) y.stephenson@sheffield.ac.uk
Andy Platts Health & Safety Officer (Unite) a.platts@sheffield.ac.uk
Jess Meacham Student Support Tutor (UCU) jess.meacham@sheffield.ac.uk
Richard Cutts Security Support Officer (Unison) r.cutts@sheffield.ac.uk
Rob Hemus Theatre and Productions Manager (Unison) r.d.hemus@sheffield.ac.uk

For any informal queries about the work of this group please contact a group member who will be happy to help. Further updates on this group and their work will continue to be added to this page so please keep checking back for information.