POSTED: February 01 2016
High stress levels threaten UK employees

High stress levels threaten UK employees

Excessive stress threatens the wellbeing of employees across the UK, with 88% of workers regularly experiencing stress at work, according to research by ADP®. Nearly half (43%) of UK employees go further to say that stress is a constant factor in their roles and that they feel stressed ‘often’ or ‘very often’. In fact, just 12% of employees feel that they never experience workplace stress. Encouragingly, 79% of UK workers feel that their employer is trying to help them manage stress levels.

Annabel Jones, HR Director at ADP UK, commented: “Some level of stress is part of most jobs and, at its best, can make work more dynamic. However, excessive and frequent stress is one of the biggest threats to a modern workforce, affecting staff morale, productivity and efficiency. Businesses should therefore be alert of how their workforce is feeling and ensure their well-being is maintained.”

Stress awareness could be explained by the drive for holistic wellbeing. Mindfulness and ‘work with purpose’ have made their way up the corporate agenda, emerging as key tools supporting employee engagement. Interestingly, 31% of employees in the UK perceive a good work-life balance as the top motivating factor at work. This is followed by the ability to work when and where they want (29%) and employee benefits that look after long term financial welfare (24%).

With this in mind, it is perhaps unsurprising that employees are eager to move away from the traditional ‘9-5’ working pattern. 36% would like a mixture of flexible and fixed hours, but another 37% would like to adopt a totally flexible working pattern.

Leon Vergnes, Senior Vice President EMEA, at ADP, commented: “Over the past few years, we have seen employee attitudes toward work-life balance and the quality of life shift dramatically. We believe this is more than just a passing trend, and employee desires are really affecting how companies operate. The appetite for flexible working opportunities is on the rise, and we also expect to see an increasing demand for employee benefits that support health and wellbeing. Employers must ensure that they can respond to these demands and have the support and technology in place to make the change possible.”