Excessive overtime leads to excessive stress

The more overtime an employee does, the more stress they are likely to suffer reveals Best Companies, the name behind The Sunday Times Best Companies to Work For lists. Their annual research of organisations that entered their process found that more than a third of respondents work up to 10 hours overtime a week and nearly half of employees reported that they work some overtime. Unsurprisingly, wellbeing scores for British workers have declined in the last 12 months.

This is not good news for employers; but the fact is that longer hours and more overtime are directly related to the percentage of employees reporting stress related symptoms. For employees working more than ten hours per week in overtime the statistics reveal that one in three will have stress related symptoms of some sort.  Half of the employees surveyed report that most days they feel exhausted when they come home from work – and this is even without taking overtime into account. If overtime is a factor then this rises to a staggering 80% of employees.

Further research conducted by RSA Insurance reveals the financial implications of this issue. They have calculated that the cost of stress to UK businesses to equate to more than £673 million this year. Wellbeing is one of the eight critical factors that Best Companies measures to gauge levels of workplace engagement. Jonathan Austin, Founder and CEO of Best Companies comments:

“Organisations that get wellbeing wrong literally pay the price for doing so. However, what we have seen in those companies that top the Best Companies lists is that, to really have an impact, employee wellbeing has to be rooted deep in the values and the principles of the organisation. It is not a bolt-on or merely a ‘nice-to-have’. Organisations that are getting it right recognise the critical role employees play and take steps to ensure that staff wellbeing is core to what they do.”

Best Companies are currently taking registrations for The Sunday Times Best Companies to Work for competition.  Find out what your employees say it’s like to work for your organisation… after all they know better than anyone. 


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