The UK is a 'nation of stressed staff' - with people eating lunch at their desks, working overtime and through holidays and sickness, according to new research.
The Big Work Survey, conducted by YouGov on behalf of the health insurer, polled 2,000 UK working adults and 500 senior decision makers.
It found businesses could be storing up ‘bigger problems down the line' because 64% admitted to being stressed at work.
A significant proportion (82%) of employees had worked over their contractual hours in the last 12 months and nearly 90% of UK workers have done their job while not feeling their healthy best - with three-fifths (59%) admitting they turned up despite being ill because of work commitments.
Westfield Health's executive director Paul Shires, said: "There are certainly positive signs to be found in this survey, with the majority saying we like our jobs and 59% of bosses rating staff health as ‘very important'. But it is shocking to hear more than a quarter of workers have cancelled holiday time because of work pressures.
"Equally, 89% of employees are also guilty of ‘presenteeism' - when people work even though they are unwell or have short or long-term untreated health conditions. This is increasingly being recognised as a contributor to lost productivity and potential health costs for employers, as a result of staff performing below par, feeling unmotivated or making errors due to illness."
Nearly half of Britons (46% ) are eating lunch at their desk/place of work - and 54% don't take breaks (other than lunch) on a typical day - with 29% revealing they have even missed longer breaks by cancelling annual leave because of work commitments.
Additionally one third of senior decision-makers revealed their business offers flexible working hours - while 28% discourage it.
Stress was acknowledged as a significant problem in the workplace, with more than a quarter (26%) saying it is a ‘common pressure'. But nearly all (95%) believe workforce health is important to the success of their organisation.
Scottish workers are the UK's most stressed workforce (71%) compared with Welsh employees who were the least (52%.) Nearly half (47%) of all employees said their employer does not create a ‘fun and healthy environment' to work in.
Of those that find their current job stressful, 47% choose to spend time with their family to unwind after work, while 31% opt for exercise and over a third (35%) try to counter stress by drinking alcohol or comfort eating (27%).
Shires added: "Steps to improve worker health can lead to measurable economic benefits which may be greater than the costs associated with sickness absence, as well as boost morale and improve recruitment and retention."
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