Reducing employee stress

Stress Awareness Day - 6th Novemebr 2019

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Health Assured team

28 October 2019

According to a 2018 survey carried out by Forth, work is the second most common cause for stress, followed by health concerns and lack of sleep.


With stress awareness day fast approaching on the 6th November, event organisers are encouraging employers to review their wellbeing strategies and focus on reducing stress in the workplace.


Common signs of work-related stress

Going through stress at work can have physical and mental effects on employees. Although stress is a common problem in the workplace, individuals are bound to handle it differently. With that in mind, you should be able to recognise some of the common signs of stress at work. They include:

  • Reduced focus and concentration
  • Lack of confidence
  • Mood swings
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Gaining or losing weight
  • An increase in alcohol and drug intake
  • Increased fatigue


These issues are not exclusively work-related as employees may also experience them as a result of external factors. However, regardless of the source, stress can end up affecting an employee’s quality of work.


Causes of stress in the workplace

If you recognise signs of workplace stress in your employees, It’s important to identify and address the causes.


There are a number of factors that can ignite stress at work. Some common factors include:

  • Job insecurity
  • Tight deadlines
  • Lack of equipment and other resources.
  • Over or under supervision
  • Increased workload and change of duties
  • Extended working hours


Minimising stress in the workplace

Nutrition: Offer your team healthy snacks such as yogurts and cereal bars as alternatives to sugary foods. This will help your employees maintain a healthy weight, improve their moods and prevent them from experiencing ‘sugar crashes’.

Work-life balance: Encourage your team to use their annual leave to have a well-earned break away from work. You should also monitor how often they respond to emails outside work hours and highlight it before they become burnt out.

Listen: Sometimes, employees need a chance to voice their concerns at work, whether it’s regarding their workload, personal life or colleagues. Listen to employee concerns with an open mind, and help them find solutions to the work problems that are contributing to their stress.


Benefits of managing stress

Retention and acquisition: Employees are less likely to leave their current employment if they’re valued and aren’t overly stressed. The same goes for potential recruits, they’re more likely to accept a new position at an organisation that supports and invests in the wellbeing of their staff.


Absenteeism: Stress is one of the leading causes of staff absences in the workplace. Acas puts the cost of employee absences to the UK economy upwards of £8.4 million every year. While in Ireland, up to 11 million days are lost through absenteeism every year at a cost of €1.5bn to the Irish economy. By supporting employees experiencing increased pressure at work, you will be able to reduce stress and anxiety-related absences.


Workplace stress can negatively impact the productivity and growth of any organisation. Taking steps to counteract these effects and create a more positive work environment, will not only increase employees’ levels of job satisfaction and wellbeing, but will also help your business run more efficiently moving forward.



If you would like to find out more information on any of the topics mentioned in this article, please contact Health Assured on:

UK: 0844 892 2493

ROI: 01886 0324

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