- Mental Health America (MHA), in collaboration with the Faas Foundation, confirmed in its two-year research project, Mind the Workplace, that disengaged workers cause massive losses in productivity — between $450 and $500 billion a year.
- The research project also found that only 25% of respondents felt they were adequately paid; 44% felt that skilled employees were unrecognized for their work. Among employees, reported rates of absenteeism (33%), work-family conflict (81%) and mental health and behavioral problems (63%) exacerbated issues.
- Research results also found that, in mentally healthy organizations, 52% of employees enjoyed flexible work arrangements, 75% reported open door and relaxed work environments, and 69% were offered professional development opportunities.
Many more employers are recognizing the toll mental stress has on employees' overall health, productivity and job dissatisfaction. Workers want and need more flexible work schedules to balance job and home responsibilities. They also favor career development opportunities and want to feel valued and recognized for their work. These factors often mean more to them than a bigger paycheck.
Employers have responded with wellness programs that include mental well-being and financial components, the latter of which employees cite as their biggest stressor. More employers are seeing value in offering flexible work schedules, perhaps because this benefit is now a must for job seekers. The adoption of flexible work also reflects further changes in how employers measure productivity, making work more accessible for workers of various backgrounds.
When employers consider the financial toll of absenteeism and healthcare for stress-related illnesses, it's clear that engagement starts with providing a workplace that's aligned with not only the organization's strategic goals, but also with the work concepts that employees value.