Employees face burnout alone

70 per cent of employees have experienced symptoms of burnout in the last 12 months

Research from HR, payroll and finance specialist MHR has found more than half of UK employees (55 per cent) say there is nobody at work to turn to if they are experiencing burnout. The research, conducted by MHR for Mental Health Awareness Week, found only one in five (18 per cent) employees would go to their line manager with the issue and just 7 per cent would approach HR.

With 70 per cent of employees reporting to have experienced symptoms of burnout in the last 12 months, the issue is becoming critical. But employees feel there is a lack of support, despite corporate rhetoric around mental health and wellbeing. Over half (51 per cent) of all work-related sickness is related to stress, depression or anxiety, so companies who fail to tackle the issue stand to lose out in the long term.

The research identified lack of support from employers to be the leading cause of burnout, reported by 49 per cent of respondents. Other contributors cited include lack of recognition (23 per cent), conflicts at work (15 per cent) and no career development (13 per cent).

HR professionals play a vital role in addressing these areas and improving workplace wellbeing, but they must be careful not to neglect their own health in the process, after nearly a quarter (22 per cent) of employees said HR professionals are likely to overlook their own wellbeing due to their focus on managing the wellbeing of others.

The issues posed by burnout are likely to get worse, with respondents saying Gen Z (37 per cent) and Millennials (32 per cent) are the most likely age groups to be susceptible to burnout. These two generations are expected to make up 58 per cent of the global workforce by 2030, so it is important that reducing burnout becomes a priority for employers looking to retain the best talent.

“It is both surprising and extremely concerning to find that many employees don’t feel they have anyone at work to turn to if they are experiencing symptoms of burnout,” said Anton Roe, CEO of MHR. “The results of today’s survey not only show that burnout is a common problem, but also there are easy steps for organisations to take which can mitigate its risk. Companies should act now to make sure that the right mental health support is available for all their employees, whether that’s through training mental health first aiders, making more mental health resources available to their employees, or more regularly checking in on their employees’ mental health.”

Read more about MHR mental health support here: https://mhrglobal.com/uk/en/knowledge-hub/hr/mental-health-guide-download

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