Acas has launched new advice for employers on managing stress after a third of British workers (33%) believe that their organisation is not effective at managing work-related stress.

Acas commissioned YouGov to ask employees in Britain about whether they feel that their organisation is effective at managing work-related stress. The poll also found that 34% of employees felt that their workplace was effective at managing stress and 23% neither agreed nor disagreed.

An Acas poll in March revealed that 3 out of 5 employees (63%) felt stressed due to the rising cost of living. Acas Chief Executive, Susan Clews, said:

It is vitally important for employers to be able to spot and manage the signs of stress as it can lead to staff exhaustion, low morale and reduced productivity if it is not properly managed.

Acas has published new advice for employers that includes tips on how to spot the signs of stress, help manage it and create an environment at work where staff can openly talk about it.

Susan Clews, Acas Chief Executive

Stress can be caused by a variety of factors such as demands of the job, relationships at work, poor working conditions or change. Life events outside of work can also cause stress such as a bereavement in the family or financial worries over the cost of living.

Creating a positive work environment can help reduce work stress and can reap huge benefits to an organisation, such as:

  • Make employees healthier and happier at work;
  • Improve performance and make employees more productive;
  • Reduce absence levels;
  • Reduce workplace disputes; and
  • Make the organisation more attractive to job seekers

Acas advice for employers on managing stress at work includes:

  • Look out for any signs of stress among staff;
  • Be approachable, available and have an informal chat with staff who are feeling stressed;
  • Respect confidentiality and be sensitive and supportive when talking to staff about work-related stress; and
  • Communicate any internal and external help available to staff such as financial advice if the cost of living is a cause of stress.

The signs of stress can include:

  • Poor concentration;
  • Finding it hard to make decisions;
  • Being irritable or short tempered;
  • Tearfulness;
  • Tiredness;
  • Low mood; and
  • Avoiding social events.

For the full Acas advice, please see:

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Joanne is the editor for Workplace Wellbeing Professional and Family History Zone. After obtaining a bachelors degree in English literature and media studies, Joanne went on to spend two years of her life writing and teaching English in China and Vietnam. Prior to joining Black and White Trading, Joanne was a marketing coordinator for luxury property in Brighton focusing on blog writing, photography and video creation.