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High workload causes many burnout complaints

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Employers are still failing to address the high workload. Almost 1.3 million people in our country suffered from burnout complaints last year, which is as many as the period before corona. This was revealed on Monday in the fact sheet Work Stress, based on the National Survey of Working Conditions (NEA) by research firm TNO and statistics agency CBS.

Some 40 percent of employers indicate that work pressure is one of the main risks within the company. To address this, they mainly put their efforts into increasing autonomy, establishing a point of contact, and adjusting the work.

"But there hasn't been much movement on that in recent years," says TNO researcher Wendela Hooftman. "The problem is far from being solved."

For instance, workers are getting more and more tasks. "People are again indicating more often that the work is demanding. They have to work fast and hard, while at the same time they are given less say and freedom in how they perform their tasks. Employees and employers must therefore talk to each other about boundaries, including, for example, whether or not they should be available outside working hours," Hooftman said.

The increased workload ensures that absenteeism remains at a high level.

More than four in 10 workers say it is necessary to take measures against work-related stress, and 37 percent of workers say that work pressure or work-related stress is the reason they are sick at home.

According to CBS, some 11 percent of workers in the teaching profession cited work pressure as the main reason for the latest absence last year. Teachers in academic and higher education and in secondary schools most often indicated this. Absenteeism due to work pressure was also mentioned relatively often by workers in ICT, with a creative and language profession, or in health and welfare.

Workers were sick 11 million days last year

The decline in psychological complaints during the corona pandemic thus did not continue. This is also reflected in the number of absence days. Last year, workers were sick for a total of 11 million days due to work-related stress. In 2020, this was still nine million.

As a result, absenteeism costs for employers remain high. In 2020, this resulted in a cost of €2.8 billion. A year earlier, it was still 3.2 billion euros. The wage costs for 2021 are not yet known, but assuming average wage growth, they are expected to be around 3.3 billion euros.

Do your employees experience a lot of pressure? Then it might be a good idea to expand your team to take the weight off one’s shoulders. Let experts help you find the best professionals for your Life Science organisation. Check out how you can be helped here.

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