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Anxiety levels 27% higher in stressed workers

New research from WorkScore shows that frequent stress at work is making employees more anxious, less happy and more prone to mental health issues.

WorkScore recently compared the data from over 11,000 employees and found that a disturbing 78 per cent of employees experience frequent stress at work and it is having a negative impact on their mental health.

The data showed that stressed employees are 27 per cent more anxious and have a higher level of mental health issues by 13 per cent than their less stressed colleagues.

“Clearly, high work stress is impacting the mental health of employees and leading to increased anxiety,” WorkScore co-founder Suzanne Deeming said.

The WorkScore data also supported the notion that work-life balance is good for our mental health.

“The data also shows a strong correlation between happiness and work-life balance, with those employees who get a good balance rating as 28 per cent happier and 25 per cent less anxious,” Ms Deeming said. 

“But there’s more to it than a focus on balance. Reducing stress and allowing employees to switch off from work is very important. A third of our respondents find it hard to switch off from work and a third report poor work and life balance, so clearly there is room for vast improvement.”

Four key areas were identified that can reduce anxiety in employees: flexibility in workplace hours and location, being able to switch off from work, having good balance between work and life and, importantly, less stress in the workplace.

WorkScore said the good news is employers can take action to improve stress in the workplace:

● Provide flexible working hours for employees

● Set boundaries for working late

● Provide wellbeing and mental health support

● Encourage time for family and hobbies

“Employers should also invest in a wellbeing program, as our research shows that employees who rate work as caring about employee wellbeing are less anxious, less stressed, are happier and more engaged at work,” Ms Deeming said.

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