Two thirds (65%) of those working from home feel pressure to stay connected after normal hours with an average of 22 hours put in of overtime per month by employees over the last year, worth €7 billion.
The research, which measures the wellbeing of over 1,000 Irish employees and 180 HR leaders during the pandemic, is the second barometer issued by laya healthcare during Covid-19 and will be unveiled at a free virtual event for HR leaders on 11 March 2021.
The findings reveal a desire among Irish employers and employees to make mental health services within organisations more accessible. Seven in 10 (69%) organisations admit that the biggest challenge to working from home is managing the mental wellbeing of employees, up by almost 10% compared to six months ago. Along with mental health management, over seven in 10 employees (74%) believe the workforce should be vaccinated before returning to work and an encouraging 79% said they would get it if available.
Commenting on the research, Head of Health and Wellbeing at laya healthcare, Sinéad Proos said, "We are seeing worrying signs of deteriorating morale among employees, due in part to less social interaction with colleagues, the struggle to self-motivate, and having to be ‘always-on’. Our latest barometer shows that employee motivation and maintaining organisational culture are becoming more notable issues compared to six months ago, with a greater number of employees now citing the loss of workplace bonding as their top challenge of working from home."
She added, "There is an overwhelming feeling of being stuck in stasis — some say the hopeful start to 2021 has failed to materialise while almost half of workers feel stuck in their current employment, wanting to change jobs but held back because of lack of opportunities. Employers also indicated that effective communication is a challenge, and this has a real knock-on effect — if workers aren’t feeling communicated to, and supported, this can lend itself to the feeling of stagnation."