About Us

Open Minds Alliance CIC is a not-for-profit organisation formed to develop and deliver training packages for a range of sectors. We have recently joined forces with Stand to Reason, the workplace mental health charity who have delivered a number of successful workplace programmes that have had a significant measurable impact on reducing sickness and absence and improving productivity.

Connecting with People now manage and deliver the Stand to Reason workplace mental health programmes and this partnership has significantly enhanced the scope for delivery of these courses, as Connecting with People already deliver large-scale health and wellbeing programmes across the NHS, Third Sector and Private Sector. The Managing Director of Connecting with People, Gavin Peake-Jones, has been working with Stand to Reason for the past two years to lead the development and delivery of the workplace mental health training programmes.

The Business Case for Proactively Managing Mental Health in the Workplace

Every organisation in Britain is affected by mental distress and ill health in the workforce.  At any one time, one worker in six will be experiencing depression, anxiety or problems relating to stress.  Mental ill health is normal in every workplace in the land.

The total cost to employers of mental health problems among their staff is estimated at nearly £26 billion each year.  That is equivalent to £1,035 for every employee in the UK workforce.

In the UK, the cost to business each year from mental ill health are:

  • £8.4 billion a year in sickness absence.  The average employee takes seven days off sick each year of which 40 per cent are for mental health problems.  This adds up to 70 million lost working days a year, including one in seven directly caused by a person’s work or working conditions.
  • £15.1 billion a year in reduced productivity at work.  ‘Presenteeism’ accounts for 1.5 times as much working time lost as ‘absenteeism’ and costs more to employers because it is more common among higher-paid staff.
  • £2.4 billon a year in replacing staff who leave their jobs because of mental ill health.
    (The Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health – Policy Paper 8 ‘Mental Health at Work:  Developing the Business Case’).


For every 80p spent on health promotion and intervention programmes, £4 can be saved due to reduced absenteeism, temporary staff, presenteeism and improved motivation.  (The European Network for Workplace Health Promotion - sourced: International Stress Management Association UK, 2011).

A literature and case study review by PwC found a return on investment, in terms of a benefit-cost ratio for wellness programmes of £4.17 for every £1 spent.  (PriceWaterhouseCoopers, 2008, Building a Case for Wellness).