More than half of businesses believe the economic downturn has had a detrimental impact on their employees' work-life balance.
Figures from independent research commissioned by PMI Health Group show 56 per cent of businesses believe their staff are working longer hours.
Despite this, almost 30 per cent of companies admit they are still not taking measures to improve work-life balance.
"Employers clearly believe the challenging economic climate has placed greater strain on their employees," said PMI Health Group Director Mike Blake.
"Increased pressure on business to reduce costs and improve efficiency has, in turn, led to increased pressure on staff and a recent EU study revealed 78 per cent of British workers expect stress to increase further in coming years1.
"Longer hours and a heavier workload mean working responsibilities can infringe upon staff members' home or family life, potentially leading to more serious long-term health issues."
A significant majority (80 per cent) of companies surveyed admitted their employees' work-life balance could be improved without adversely affecting business profitability.
Furthermore, 58 per cent believe work-life balance is now more important to staff than financial remuneration.
"In a world of increasing commercial pressures, faster communications and efficiency drives it is difficult to avoid greater pressure in the workplace but the onus is on employers to limit its effect," added Mike.
"By offering initiatives such as flexible working hours and employee benefits programmes, they can better address the specific needs of individual staff members without significantly cutting into profits.
"The introduction of workplace wellbeing schemes and employee assistance programmes can also help to address the causes of stress and provide staff with the necessary support to deal with any problems that may arise."
PMI Health Group helps clients to cut the cost of employee illness, minimise levels of sickness absence and retain good staff. It offers employee benefits packages, healthcare insurances, employee assistance and stress management programmes, health screening and absence management initiatives. The company also helps employers to reduce the frequency and cost of claims made on healthcare or income protection policies through its specialist nurse-led claims management team. By giving employees support during an absence, the company is consistently successful in returning staff to work quicker.Read more...