The number of professionals experiencing thoughts of suicide or self-harm has increased, with women almost twice as likely as men to seek support, the survey found.
Research published by workplace wellness provider Champion Health found the proportion of professionals reporting feelings of suicide or self-harm increased from 8% in 2021 to 9% in 2022.
The Workplace Health Report 2023 reveals that women are more likely than men to receive professional support. 12% of women who thought about suicide or self-harm for several days or more fell into this category, compared to 7% of men.
Champion Health CEO Harry Bliss said the number of workers reporting suicidal thoughts was “appalling”.
“A 1 percent increase from last year to 9 percent may seem low, it’s not. It means 90 people out of a workforce of 1,000 are considering suicide, which has a devastating effect,” he said.
“Leaders need to uplift and support their workforce, it’s not just an ethical thing to do but this research shows that poor mental health, stress and fatigue are increasingly affecting productivity, so it’s in the best interests of business too.”
Based on a survey of 4,170 employees, the report shows a 9 percentage point increase in the number of employees experiencing moderate to high levels of stress, with 76% of respondents now affected.
The main drivers of work-related stress include perceived high workload, which was cited by 73% of respondents, followed by lack of control (31%), lack of support (29%) and senior staff members (27%). Only 9% say they never feel stressed at work and 2% say they are overwhelmed.
Outside of work, 37% say financial worries cause stress, up from 30% last year. One in five say their financial worries affect their ability to work.
The survey was conducted in January-October 2022, before the majority of workers were hit by the cost-of-living crisis.
Physical health is also a concern for many, with the report finding that 41% experience musculoskeletal pain – of which 17% say it affects their productivity – and 62% experience at least one symptom of eye strain, possibly due to poor home setup. Offices.
Although the report suggests that the health and well-being of workers is declining, the overwhelming majority of respondents (98%) feel motivated to improve their health. Four out of 10 want to lose weight and increase their energy levels in equal proportion.