A majority of workers don’t take time off for stress

80% of UK workers wouldn’t take time off due to a stress-related illness, according to a survey of 1,006 full and part-time UK employees conducted by Canada Life Group.

The report also found that 90% of respondents have gone into work despite feeling ill, with 28% feeling their workloads are too great to call in sick and 21% citing financial worries as a reason for not taking time off.

“Presenteeism is going nowhere”

Paul Avis, marketing director at Canada Life Group, said “Presenteeism is going nowhere, with 9 in 10 UK employees still coming into work when unwell. With Financial pressures and excessive workloads cited as the main causes, it is clear employers need to do more to reassure their staff that health and wellbeing is a top priority.”

The research also found:

    • 17% go into work because they feel guilty for taking time off
    • 16% think they will be seen as lazy for taking time off
    • 14% worry about being viewed as weak by colleagues
  • Despite these figures, 69% said they are unable to perform to their maximum ability while at work and 73% said they have become ill as a result of a colleague’s illness.

    Just over half of respondents said they would go into work with the flu and 42% said they would do so if suffering from a stomach virus. When it came to what it would take to actually take time off, only 23% of respondents said it would take hospitalisation for them to not go in.

    Brexit causing “state of flux”

    Avis says the vote for the UK to leave the EU has “thrown everything into a state of flux” and isn't surprised that more people are concerned about job security than ever before. He continued: “As with physical illness, failing to tackle mental health problems can be hugely damaging, not only to the individual, but to the wider business as well.”

    In light of this, it’s important for companies to implement clear sickness absence policies that properly reassure employees. To do this, they must employ HR and employee compensation, benefit and reward staff who understand sickness policy.

    If you are looking to recruit experienced staff who can implement policies that will positively benefit your employees, our recruitment consultants will help. Register your vacancy with us today.

    We are based in Central London near Liverpool Street – pay us a visit or call 020 7650 3190 to get started.

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