HR community still sees stress as number one threat to UK workforce

Stress is still seen as the biggest threat to the welfare of UK workers, according to research by health benefits provider HSA.

More than four in 10 senior HR professionals surveyed singled out stress as the main health concern of the workforce.

This far outstripped other concerns such as increasing workloads (15%) and obesity (11%).

However, the number of HR professionals that believed stress was the top threat to employee health has fallen dramatically from last year, when 97% cited it as their primary concern.

Lee Nicholls, employer brand manager at HSA, said stress remained an issue. “Stress might not be the same type of concern as an accident in the workplace, but it should still be at the forefront of employer thinking on employee wellbeing.”

Stress is a bigger worry for HR professionals in the public sector than those at private firms, the survey found. Half of public sector HR professionals said stress was their greatest concern, compared with 39% in the private sector.

Of the 593 HR professionals surveyed, 82% said the NHS did not provide adequate support to employers in managing sickness absence.

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