Burnout worries increase

A new analysis by Glassdoor shows concerns about burnout are rising as a survey shows many aren’t taking their full annual leave entitlement.

Working Late


Negative discussion about burnout amongst UK workers is up 48 percent in the last 12 months, according to a study by Glassdoor.

The analysis is based on more than 382,000 anonymous employee reviews. A separate Glassdoor survey found that, while 72 percent of UK workers in full-time employment believe annual leave to be an effective way to minimise burnout, only a third of workers (34 percent) say their employer encourages them to take their total annual leave allocation.

In addition, only 3 in 5 (60 percent) workers used all their holiday entitlement in the last year. And 18 percent under 25 admit to taking zero annual leave over the previous 12 months.

When asked why they didn’t take all their holiday, 13 percent of employees said their workload was too heavy to take time off. A further nine percent felt pressure from their employer to limit their holiday use and eight percent couldn’t financially afford to take time off. Half said that it was easier to forget to take annual leave when working from home.

For employees who use at least some of their holiday allocation, nearly half (47 percent) found it impossible to disconnect from work fully.

One in five workers (21 percent) admitted they felt the need to keep on top of what was happening in the office and 20 percent worried about uncompleted work they left behind. A further 18 percent said they could not switch off knowing they were contactable by work and 16 percent revealed that their home and work lives were too intertwined to relax on holiday.

In addition, financial worries stopped 14 percent of workers from relaxing (increasing to 26 percent for those living in London) and one in 10 said disconnecting was impossible due to fear of losing their job.

Time off also became a ‘work-cation,’ with 28 percent of employees admitting to checking their emails while on holiday and 18 percent reaching out to a coworker during annual leave. One in five (22 percent) were also contacted by their company while on holiday while 14 percent of workers said they use their annual leave to job hunt.

Glassdoor economist Lauren Thomas says: “Burnout levels have skyrocketed in the last 12 months – and companies need to take action. After Covid first hit, employers felt pressure to ‘build back better’, but many were caught short by labour shortages and the quick return of consumer demand. Although this tipped the job market in favour of the candidate, workplaces were left extremely understaffed and workers disillusioned. Placing employee experience at the heart of company recruitment and retention strategies will slow the upward trend of burnout we’ve seen over the past year and ultimately make workplaces healthier and more productive.”

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