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Most Employers Not Addressing Workplace Stress

July 26, 2010

D&B Consulting

A recent report by Watson Wyatt Worldwide and the National Buisness Group  on Health finds that employers are not  taking measures to relieve the stress that employees are experiencing from long hours, a lack of work/life balalnce and fear of job loss.  Health and productivity management programs, however, are keeping health care costs and absenteeism down.

The survey included 352 employers with 1,000 or more employees during the summer of 2009.

Specific findings include:

  • Companies with the most effective health and productivity management programs had medical costs averaging 1.2 % lower than those employers who cut back on such programs, fewer lost days due to unplanned absences of employees, and higher average returns to shareholders.
  • Although 78 % of respondents citred excessive work hours as a leading casue of stress, only 21 % said they were taking steps to address stress management.
  • Employers report a higher use of health care benefits (40%), disability claims (35 %) and the use of employee assistance programs (50%).
  •  78 % of respondents cited excessive work hours as a leading cause of stress among their employees,  but just 21% of them said they are taking steps to address this stress.
  • Although 68 % of employers cited lack of work/life balance as a leading employee stress producer, only 38 % said they are taking action to combat this stress factor.
  •  67 percent of employers cite fear of job loss as a leading cause of employee stress, yet only
    41 percent of employers said they are addressing this issue.

If you are an executive, manager or HR Director, what is your organization  doing to address the issues of work/life balance, long work hours and fear of job loss?

For more information on this report, see Staying at Work.

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