BMO Offers Free Access to Headspace to North American Employees and Their Families

  • Survey reveals only 4 per cent of North Americans rely on employers for wellness support

  • 65 per cent place importance on support for wellness, including mental health and extended benefits, when choosing an employer or new job

In advance of World Mental Health Day on October 10, BMO and Headspace, a global leader in mindfulness and meditation, announced a new partnership to help BMO employees and their families build healthy habits into their everyday routines.

Headspace offers a range of tools for managing stress, sleep, focus and more. The app’s mindfulness content helps users adopt practical and sustainable habits to increase resilience, decrease stress and anxiety and reduce burnout.

“BMO continues to make bold investments in our total rewards offering, consistent with our Purpose to support our employees in business and life. With a focus on preventative and proactive mental wellness tools, Headspace is yet another step contributing to our comprehensive mental health and wellness offerings for our employees,” said Mona Malone, Chief Human Resources Officer and Head, People and Culture, BMO. “Headspace is a leading platform that is easy to access at any time from anywhere, providing tangible resources to employees that they can share with their friends and family.”

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When it comes to wellness, a recent BMO survey found that 76 per cent of North Americans feel somewhat well and whole, but only 19 per cent strongly agree they have this feeling.

Beyond this, the survey revealed:

  • That 69 per cent of North Americans believe mental wellness is a top priority.
  • The top three things preventing North Americans from prioritizing their wellness is stress (67 per cent), money (65 per cent) and motivation (64 per cent), and more than half (54 per cent) pointed to lack of resources.
  • North Americans are most likely to rely on family (57 per cent), followed by friends (36 per cent) for wellness support, but are much less likely to turn to professional support (24 per cent). Only 4 per cent rely on their employer for support.
  • The inclusion of wellness benefits carries some importance when choosing a potential employer (65 per cent), but only one third (32 per cent) find it very important.

This new partnership with Headspace helps remove some of the barriers that employees may face in prioritizing their mental health. Employees and up to four additional users will now have access to the various mindfulness tools digitally when most convenient for them – helping to foster a safe, healthy and happy work culture. In 28 published studies in some of the leading mindfulness peer-reviewed journals, Headspace has been shown to have favorable outcomes of interventions including reduced stress, improved focus, decreased aggression, reduced burnout and improved satisfaction with life. Most recently, Headspace has revealed new content collections that celebrate and empower women, provide education on stress management, and support parents and students of all ages during the school year.

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BMO is committed to extending industry-leading employee health benefits, training and wellness programs for its employees. This also includes support for various mental health and wellness organizations within the community including CAMH, CMHA, Thresholds, Kids Help Phone, Youth Crossroads, and BUILD.

Along with the launch of Headspace, BMO has a well-established set of initiatives to support wellness across North America, such as free virtual tutoring for BMO families, back-up child and eldercare, 24/7 Employee Assistance Programs, a digital, therapist-guided Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) program, virtual healthcare and more.

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