How do the stress management standards help to manage work-related stress?

Each of the six stress management standards issued by the Health and Safety Executive provides simple statements about good management practice in relation to the desired standard. For example, with regard to "demands" the desired standard is that employees indicate that they are able to cope with the demands of their job and that systems are in place locally to respond to any individual concerns. To achieve this it is suggested that the organisation provide employees with adequate and achievable demands in relation to the agreed hours of work; that people's skills and abilities are matched to the demands of their job; that jobs are designed to be within the capabilities of employees; and that employees' concerns about their work environment are addressed.

It is not expected that all employers will meet all the standards at their first attempt. However, employers should view the standards as a goal to be achieved through an ongoing process of risk assessment and continuous improvement.