Construction is third most stressful industry
Employees in the construction industry are working in the third-most-stressed sector in the UK.
That’s according to new research from insurer AXA, as part of its 2018 Stress Index.
It found that 82% of workers in building and construction were stressed at least some of the time during a typical week.
That was just behind the most-stressed sectors – accounting and financial services, and cleaning and domestic services – each of which were on 87%.
Meanwhile, employees in the training and education sector were the UK’s least stressed, with 29% of staff never or rarely stressed. In manufacturing, the second-least-stressed industry, that figure was 27%.
Source: AXA 2018 Stress Index
The study, which looks at stress inside and outside the workplace, also revealed the issues keeping staff of all sectors awake at night. Splitting time between work and home is a major concern, with employees worried about being contacted outside of working hours (65%) and their work life balance (64%). Meanwhile, just under half (47%) were concerned about their current salary prospects and more than a third (36%) admitted to feeling stressed about redundancy.
Meanwhile, a total of 22% of workers overall admitted to being concerned about artificial intelligence or robots replacing them at work.
Listening to music was the most common way for Britain’s workforce to relieve stress, with 37% of Brits playing their favourite songs to unwind. A further 32% watch TV and just over a quarter (26%) read books.
While some favour healthy pursuits such as exercise (28%) and gardening (12%) others comfort eat (21%), drink alcohol (19%) and smoke (8%) to relieve stress.
Perhaps more worrying is the impact of stress has on the health of the workforce. According to the study, 41% feel anxious because of stress, while 36% feel tense and 29% said that stress causes restlessness.
In addition, 27% said that were not getting enough sleep due to stress, just under a quarter (24%) revealed that stress was causing a lack of interest in everyday activities and 27% claimed that problems with stress were leading to unhealthy eating.
Eugene Farrell, mental health lead, AXA PPP healthcare said: “This research shows that Britain’s workers are struggling to manage their levels of stress. Even in the least stressed sectors – such as training and education and manufacturing – the vast majority of staff are stressed at least some of the time during a typical week.
“What is promising is that many respondents are turning to healthy ways to manage stress by taking time to exercise, which is a much better option than comfort eating, drinking or smoking. Stress can cause feelings of anxiousness, restlessness and can make people feel isolated, so it is important that anyone struggling to cope seeks help – for example, from their GP or from the helplines provided by mental health charities such as Mind, Rethink Mental Illness and the Samaritans.”