New data reveals the extent that workplace stress is affecting employees across the UK, with a new survey finding that 22% of employed Brits have taken time off due to stress.
Moreover, the research found that a worrying one in ten employees have taken time off due to stress in the last 12 months.
The survey of 1,000 employees suggests that mounting workloads and high-pressure work environments are to blame, with 17% of respondents saying they are expected to work late in their current job.
Additionally, more than a fifth said their workload doesn’t allow them to take their full lunch break, with 12% saying they were so busy they aren’t able to take a lunch break at all.
The research was collated by Lanes Group, the UK’s largest privately-owned drainage specialist, who have been awarded the RoSPA Gold Health and Safety Award for nine years in a row due to their pioneering approach to staff wellbeing.
Debi Bell, Head of HR Services at Lanes Group, said:
“For a long time, managers and business owners have focused on getting the most out of their employees, which has resulted in unrealistic workloads, longer hours and staff being signed off work with stress more and more frequently.
“It is important that those managing staff are aware of the unnecessary stress this push for productivity is having, as we see staff members now being unable to relax at the end of their workday.
“Now that more companies are making use of cloud technologies, employees can feel a pressure to continue working into the evening.”
The survey found that 80% of respondents work outside of their contracted hours and that 61% even admit to answering work calls or responding to work emails while on holiday.
Debi Bell continued:
“Even if a company introduces a policy to try and tackle workplace stress, employees will deal with the pressure of their workload in different ways, so it’s important to remain in constant communication with employees on an individual level to meet their specific wellbeing needs.”
The research also found that many employees feel like they can’t talk to their managers about problems they are having.
Over a quarter (27%) said that they don’t feel able to speak to their manager about mental health issues.
Additionally, a tenth reportedly don’t feel comfortable disclosing personal issues that are affecting their workplace performance, such as a bereavement