Nearly nine out of ten employers report excessive workloads and long hours as a top source of employee stress, according to results of the Towers Watson Staying @Work survey, a biennial study of North American companies’ health and productivity practices. And the prevalence of each of these stressors has risen significantly over the past two years: 89% of employees surveyed said excessive workload and long hours is a problem, compared to just 64% in years prior.
The good news, however, is that more employers are taking action this year to address causes of workplace stress, including taking action on work-life balance, lack of supervisor support and inadequate staffing.
This is important, as key results from the survey show a strong link between health and productivity strategies with financial results and business outcomes. About 66% of companies with highly effective health and productivity programs report they perform better than their top competitors, versus 50% of companies with ineffective programs. They also report fewer lost days due to unplanned absences and disability.