Depression leads to a loss of 58 working days in the UK, according to new research.
A study by Telus Health further found that employees with anxiety see a 57-day annual productivity reduction, while sleep issues result in a 52-day decrease.
According to the findings, each year, workers with mental health issues other than depression or anxiety lose 61 working days to productivity loss.
Telus Health surveyed 2,000 UK workers for their Mental Health Index and revealed findings about anxiety, stress, depression, turnover, and flexibility.
Employees under 40 are twice as likely as those over 50 to report having anxiety and/or depression diagnoses. In addition, women are 70% more likely than males to report having an anxiety diagnosis.
Around 58% of office workers say they would prefer a five-day work week with the option to work remotely as often as they would want. However, 42% of respondents favour a four-day work week in the workplace.
Meanwhile, 41% of workers think about quitting their current position or are unsure about their future. Managers are more than 30% more likely than non-managers to consider quitting for a better position or a different professional path. Better benefits are almost twice as likely to be cited by parents as a reason for thinking about changing jobs as by non-parents.
In addition, employees under 40 are almost three times as likely as those over 50 to consider quitting their current position in search of a better one or a more promising career path. Additionally, they are nearly twice as likely to consider leaving for better benefits.
Telus Health global leader and senior vice-president of research and total wellbeing Paula Allen said: “Our Telus Mental Health Index findings reveal the impact of diagnosed health conditions on employees and productivity, highlighting the need for employers to put more focus on – and resources into – employee health.
“By helping employees achieve an optimum point in their own personal health scale, employers will reap the benefits of lower cost, increased employee engagement and productivity.
“This means having accessible mental health support and services in place, communicating these services, and providing education to address stigma. It also means training managers on mental health in the workplace and their role in supporting it. While managers are not expected to be mental health counsellors, they do play a role in fostering a psychologically safe workplace and providing support when needed.
“Another part of one’s experience in the workplace is flexibility, which our findings show as a contributor to employee wellbeing. Flexibility will show itself in many ways, so employers should work with employees, to determine the type of flexibility that is possible and most needed.
“Job retention is increasingly important in today’s uncertain economic climate, and it is very telling that workers are placing equal, if not greater, importance on better wellbeing support compared to job promotions or career opportunities.
“This highlights an opportunity for employers to meet employees’ needs by providing resources and real-time support that go beyond financial considerations and job promotions in order to maintain morale and ultimately retain top talent.”