INTRODUCTIONFor facing economic downturn, a lot of organisations

INTRODUCTIONFor many businesses, the largest single element in the cost of pure risk is the cost associated with employees’ injuries and occupational disease. Under the current system of law specifically govern under Occupational Safety and Health Act, an employer is held absolutely liable for injuries to employees that arise out of and in the course of employment. Compensation to injured workers is made under a statutory schedule of benefits that is payable in addition to the total cost of medical expenses associated with injury. There are five main categories of health hazards in the workplace which including physical, chemical, biological, ergonomics and psychosocial. For the purpose of this writing, explanations on psychosocial hazard will be discussed in details. PSYCHOSOCIAL RISKIn today corporate world, there are a lot of changes related to the approach on how work is organised and managed. Due to the changes, occupational health and safety (OSH) has to face new challenges in order to overcome issues from the emerging risk. Upon this issue, researchers have identified that psychosocial risks is one of the key emerging risks in workplace. Psychosocial hazards or risks are including stress, violence or bullying in the workplace environment. It can be said that the changing in nature of work structure is actually contributing to psychosocial risks at the workplace. This is because workers are facing greater pressure in order to meet work demands, longer working period, higher expectations and increased in competition. In addition, global competition and increment in flexibility of labour market have lead to more uncertain and insecure jobs, which also resulted in a stressful work environment. Other than that, as the world are currently facing economic downturn, a lot of organisations considering on restructuring, reorganisation, or downsizing which contributing to increment of psychosocial risks because employees are facing the possibility of mass retrenchment, reduction in job security, fewer job opportunities and financial instability. Nowadays, stress can be said as common at the workplace due to work overload as to meet demands of current work environment. However, excessive and unmanaged stress can be harmful to employees’ wellbeing as it may result in negative consequences to their mental and physical health. Currently, work-related stress is one of the most challenging issues in the list of occupational safety and health (OSH) that need to be overcome. It is a growing alarm around the globe as it has a significant negative impact on the wellbeing of employees, the productivity of organisations and economy of the nation as a whole. Moreover, if strees is not properly managed and controlled, it can be very costly to the workers and organisation in the future.  This is because stress in the workplace can result in absenteeism or habitual absence from work and presenteeism, being present at work despite being sick. Both uncontrolled absenteeism and presenteeism may lead to a loss of efficiency and productivity. Stressful workers can also contribute to higher accident and injury rates. It is worsen when uncontrolled stress suffered by workers may result in mental health problems such as anxiety and depressive disorder. In addition, ignorance towards burden of stress can lead to the emergent of physical health issues, including cardiovascular diseases and musculoskeletal disorders. Mental health is defined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as a state of wellbeing upon which an individual realises his or her potential, can cope with normal stress every day, work productively and contribute to society. Therefore, workers need to achieve a good state of mental health to well function and be at their best performance.Although there are various factors contribute to employees’ mental health and wellbeing, there is supported evidence that the workplace environment gives a significant contribution as workers spend about one-third of their day at the office. Chairman of National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye, stated that all organisations must consider work-related stress and psychosocial risks as part of their safety and health strategy in order to reduce accidents and injuries at the workplace. This is very important since the National Health and Morbidity Survey in 2015 shows that about 4.2 million Malaysians aged 16 and over, or 29.2 percent of the population suffer from various mental problems. In addition, by 2020, experts have warned that mental illness will become the second biggest health problem affecting Malaysians after heart diseases. This indicates that employers must take serious and be aware that the neglect of mental health and psychosocial factors at the workplace is not only harmful to the individual worker but also directly affects productivity, efficiency, output and performance of the organisation as a whole.RECOMMENDATION First of all, by considering the serious consequences of stress at the workplace, organisations need to take into account on work-related stress and psychosocial risks as part of their safety and health strategy. Furthermore, organisations should implement policy that may assist in preventing or reducing stress and, create safe and healthy psychosocial work surroundings. It is also essential for an organisation to take initiative in creating functions and culture that can reduce workplace stress. Therefore, it is the responsibility of each person in an organisation in taking care of ergonomics, work environment, good communication and organisational development in order to reduce level of stress in workplace. Other than that, it is also important to give exposure to the employees on what is psychosocial, how to handle stress and anything related to it through education and training. These are essential especially when employers and employees may not recognise symptoms of stress or psychosocial risks such as a mild form of depression like burnout and dysthymia. Therefore, risk management approaches such as conducting situational analysis, formulating an action plan to reduce risk, implementing screening for early detection and having a flow chart for management and referral should be undertaken by employers. All of these initiatives are important in order to produce a high-quality and healthy working environment. Last but not least, it is also necessary to strengthen social support in the workplace. Peer support group is helpful in reducing pressure, burden and worry among employees. For individual stress management, an employee should try to improve his communication and problem-solving skills. In addition, each worker should learn anger management skills and excellent time management so that they have better coping and dealing abilities. At the same time, it would also be useful for employees to learn techniques for relaxation and consider healthy lifestyles. This means that, the employees herself or himself must take initiative on how to adapt with and control the work stress.  CONCLUSIONIn today’s challenging work environment, workplace accidents, injuries and complaints continue to be an anxious dilemma in organisations. This indicates that the management of the organisation has a new challenge which is to create a work environment with the purpose of attracting, keeping and motivating its labour force. Several initiatives should be taken by the management team in order to reduce and avoid any injuries and health problems and increasing comfort in the workplace as it may provide many benefits to an organization. In addition, work-related stress must not be overlooked when discussing Organisational Safety and Health issues. Through proper management of stress at work will create a healthy work environment in which make workers feel valued, the workplace culture is more positive and, as a result, business performance will improve as workers become more productive and customers are better served and their needs met. At the same time, this would help the company to save money currently spent on health compensation, time and profit loss due to absenteeism and increasing the rate of employee retention which may reduces the cost of recruitment.


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