According to the latest survey by ComPsych Corporation, an employee assistance program provider, a third of employees (29%) showed up for work too stressed out to do their job well – a 10% increase from the company’s poll six months ago. There was a 13% increase in the number of workers citing “lack of job security” as their primary stress factor, according to a ComPsych news release.
“While a certain amount of stress can spur productivity, the levels employees are dealing with now are counterproductive,” said Richard Chaifetz, chairman and CEO of ComPsych, in a statement. “What we are seeing is a workplace situation that is incongruent with the economic rebound. The recovery has brought more work, yet there are few new hires and fewer pay raises. Employees seem to be at a boiling point.”
The company’s second half 2003 survey found clear evidence of major stress problems among the responding companies with only 37% saying their stress was either low or was constant but manageable – a 15% decrease from the first half 2003 poll. Six out of 10 (63%) said their stresses were through the roof, leaving them feeling tired and out of control – a 15% increase from ComPsych’s first half 2003 poll.
Coping with their workload pushed 42% of respondents to the edge, a 1% hike from earlier this year. A third cited people issues, a 2% drop; while 16% had trouble juggling work and personal responsibilities, a 12% decrease.
Whatever the cause, the stress is taking its toll on workers’ ability to function. Nearly half (48%) show up one to four days per year too stressed out be effective, a 4% hike from the earlier poll; 29% attend work in that condition five or more days yearly, up 10%; while just under a quarter (23%) say they can skate through unaffected, down 14%. Some 33% are absent three to six days yearly because of stress, down 4%.
The survey was conducted from September 1 to October 1, 2003, covering employees of more than 700 ComPsych client companies nationwide.