Suffering the loss of a family member, partner or friend can be a devastating experience, and grieving employees need to be treated with the utmost compassion and support.  

Bereavement in the workplace can be challenging – employees may need to take time off unexpectedly, find their performance is impacted or be temporarily unable to perform certain roles. However, a compassionate and supportive approach demonstrates that the organisation values its employees, helps build commitment and is likely to reduce sickness absence and help retain employees. 

This guide aims to help employers properly support grieving employees by providing compassionate and flexible responses in the immediate aftermath of bereavement and in the longer term. It will also look at developing a supportive culture and policy, and provide guidance on the training that should be offered to managers and employees. 

What you need to know: the law on bereavement

How to be more open about bereavement in the workplace

Develop a bereavement policy

Educate and support managers

Build flexible responses

Signpost to supportive services, charities and organisations

Acknowledgements

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