The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on Americans mental health and there is especially evident in the workplace. Many companies realize this; However, many are not doing enough to support their employees according to the results of a new survey.
A local jobs portal named JobSage recently surveyed nearly 2,050 employed Americans workers to lean more about if companies are doing enough to support the mental health of their workers and what services they offer employees to cope with mental health issues. Let’s dive into the survey results to learn more about what they found.
Are companies doing enough for their employee’s mental health?
JobSage found that 1 in 5 American workers said that their employer doesn’t do enough to support their mental health currently. Of those surveyed, 2 in 5 reported that work had the worst impact on their mental health, only second to finances. So, what can employers do to make sure that their employees feel more supported at work?
Listed below are the top responses from what employees what from their employers to better support their mental health:
1. Better work-life balance (47% of respondents)
2. More time off work (42% of respondents)
3. Great schedule flexibility (41% of respondents)
4. Workplace discussion about mental health issues (37%)
5. Training on topics like stress management (35%)
So now that we’ve covered what employers want from their employers, let’s also discuss what workers said their employer currently offers in regard to supporting their mental health.
What employees say their company currently offers to support their mental health:
1. Flexibility at work (40%)
2. Mental health coverage (39%)
3. Access to counseling (36%)
4. Wellness programs (32%)
5. Access to online mental health programs and services (31%)
How work impacts our mental health
The great resignation is impacting workplaces around the country and around the globe and mental health is a top reason for why employees are leaving their jobs. The JobSage survey found that over 25% of American workers have quit a job because of mental health issues within the last 2 years. Another 20% have also considered quitting their job but have not done so yet. So how does the place we work impact our mental health?
JobSage found that 28% of surveyed respondents have experienced burnout in the last year. On top of that 55% report dealing with stress at work, 38% report dealing with depression, 37% report lack of motivation at work, 36% experience anxiety and 31% experience anger at work.
Listed below are the top causes of work-related stress for American workers currently employed:
1. Being overworked (37% of respondents)
2. Lack of work-life balance (33% of respondents)
3. Inadequate compensation (31% of respondents)
4. Job insecurity (29% of respondents)
5. Lack of support at work (29% of respondents)
6. Lack of flexibility (29% of respondents)
7. Physical work environment stressors (28% of respondents)
8. Lack of benefits (27% of respondents)
9. Bad management (26% of respondents)
10. Lack of resources at work (26% of respondents)
Mental health days are a source of guilt
The survey from JobSage found that 77% of workers surveyed said they have taken a mental health day to rest and recharge from work related stressors. During the mental health day itself, over 9 in 10 workers said they were able to fully relax and unwind. A majority of workers (78%) said they were honest about their reasoning with their boss for taking a mental health day, however 66% said they felt guilty doing so. On top of that 1 in 5 said they wouldn’t be comfortable admitting that they need a mental health day to their direct supervisor.
The stigma around discussing mental health in the workplace
The first step for employers to support employee’s mental health in the workplace is to simply have a discussion around the topic itself. Almost 20% of surveyed respondents said that they wished their employer actively discussed mental health issues more. A majority (75%) of those surveyed said they were willing to discuss the issues with colleagues, friends, and family if their employer was not willing to discuss mental health issues in the workplace.
53% of respondents said they felt comfortable when the topic of mental health comes up in the workplace, 32% said they have neutral feelings and only 15% said they were uncomfortable discussing mental health at work. While many may be hesitant to talk about mental health issues with a superior at work, those have report overwhelmingly positives experiences in doing so. However, some don’t want to discuss mental health at work. The survey found that nearly 1 in 4 said they don’t want to discuss mental health at work.
Listed below are the top reasons people avoid discussing mental health at work:
1. It’s a private matter (58% of respondents)
2. There’s a stigma around menta health (33% of respondents)
3. I don’t want me credibility to be impacted at work (31% of respondents)
4. I don’t want colleagues or my manager to lose confidence in me (30% of respondents)
5. I don’t want my boss to lose confidence in me (30% of respondents)
How Americans use mental health benefits
One really positive finding from the JobSage survey is that those who have mental health benefits tend to use them. Of those who currently have mental health benefits from their employer, 86% use the services that are offered.
Listed below are the services that are used the most:
1. Online therapy (57% of respondents)
2. Emotional support line (55% of respondents)
3. In-person therapy (50% of respondents)
4. Phone therapy (45% of respondents)
5. Text-based therapy (27% of respondents)
For those who don’t use the services offered, these are the top reasons:
2. They don’t have time (37% of respondents)
4. It’s difficult to find providers with any availability (21% of respondents)
5. It’s too expensive (20% of respondents)
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