More than one-quarter of Australians are unable to disconnect after work hours
LifeWorks Mental Health Index™ reveals 26 per cent of Australians struggle with disconnecting after regular work hours
MELBOURNE, April 21, 2022 - LifeWorks, a leading provider of digital and in-person total wellbeing solutions, today released its monthly Mental Health Index™ that showed 26 per cent of Australians are experiencing challenges disconnecting after regular work hours, with this group displaying a mental health score 11 points below the national average. Additionally, nearly half of Australians report ending their workday feeling mentally and/or physically exhausted.
Marking two years since the launch of the Index, this month’s report found that Australian employees are still under strain with a mental health score lower than the pre-pandemic benchmark of 0.0 for the 24th consecutive month.
- The Mental Health Index™ score for March 2022 is -11.9, a slight decline from February’s score of -11.8.
Many Australian workers are experiencing burnout, leading to lack of concentration and motivation
- Twenty-eight per cent of Australians find it increasingly difficult to concentrate on their work. This group has a mental health score of -30.6, nearly 19 points below the national average.
- Thirty-seven per cent of Australians find it increasingly difficult to be motivated to do their work. This group has a mental health score of -26.1, more than 14 points below the national average.
- Of the 26 per cent of Australians who are unable to disconnect after regular work hours, 29 per cent report that this is due to their manager continuing to contact them.
- Forty-five per cent of Australians report ending their workday feeling mentally and/or physically exhausted. This group has a mental health score of -23.3, more than 11 points below the national average.
- Respondents younger than 40 are 50 per cent more likely to feel mentally and/or physically exhausted at the end of their workday than those older than 50.
Comments from senior vice president and managing director, Asia-Pacific, Jamie MacLennan
“While many Australians have benefitted from the ability to work remotely during the pandemic, high levels of stress, burnout or languishing are a concern for individuals and organisations. It will be challenging to establish clear boundaries between professional and personal lives under the new working models, including hybrid arrangements. But, those boundaries are essential for employee wellbeing, and employers have a responsibility to implement the necessary policies, tools and resources to help make this possible.”
Comments from global leader and senior vice president, research and total wellbeing, Paula Allen
“While setting and enforcing work boundaries can be as challenging as establishing personal boundaries, this needs to be prioritised by employees and employers to ensure long-term success. Two-way dialogue is required to ensure that any stigma surrounding work boundaries is promptly addressed and employees have the support and resources they need to log off – physically and mentally – at the end of each day.”
The full Australian LifeWorks Mental Health Index™ report can be found here. This month, the report includes additional insights on Australians’ substance use and associated career stigma, workplace-sponsored addiction support programs and more.
About the Mental Health Index™
The monthly survey by LifeWorks was conducted through an online survey from March 3 to 18, 2022 with 1,000 respondents in Australia. All respondents reside in Australia and were employed within the last six months. The data has been statistically weighted to ensure the regional and gender composition of the sample reflect this population. The Mental Health Index™ is published monthly, beginning April 2020, and compares against benchmark data collected in 2017, 2018, 2019.
LifeWorks is a world leader in providing digital and in-person solutions that support the total wellbeing of individuals. We deliver a personalized continuum of care that helps our clients improve the lives of their people and by doing so, improve their business.
ID-CORP, ID-MH, ID-AUS