The coronavirus pandemic has taken a mental toll on just about everyone in the office, but a certain group of employees are struggling more with their mental health which is impacting productivity levels, personal wellbeing, and overall job satisfaction, according to a new report.
People management platform Hibob found that men and employees in management positions are grappling less with mental health and job satisfaction issues compared to women and other levels.
The study, which included responses from 1,000 full-time employees in the US, was conducted with Polish. Together, they wanted to see how US employees have handled their mental health since the start of the pandemic back in March, which forever changed the way we envision work by shuffling workers home to remote positions and making us question our place in the office.
“As companies continue to power through the pandemic, they cannot ignore their role in supporting employees who are struggling, and must take action to address them,” Hibob CEO Ronni Zehavi said in a statement. “Two-way communication and transparency are paramount to creating a strong culture, as employees need to feel the support of their managers and teams during this unique time.”
Anxiety and stress levels have been challenged during this time for most people. In the office, productivity had be on the rise since the shift to remote working, but burnout and other negative factors have been steadily increasing as the pandemic continues.
In this latest study, researchers found that 93% of employees have seen a direct impact from COVID-19. The causes vary — from personal or family illness, or changes to their financial situation — but one of the most startling discoveries is how employee satisfaction dropped by more than a quarter (27%) and mental health and wellbeing down a third (33%) since the start of the pandemic.
Managers — and women — struggling
One of the key findings of the survey was how the pandemic has challenged the mental health and wellbeing of those in management positions.
Workers in management saw a 12% decline in mental health since the onset of the pandemic, according to the survey. Additionally, managers are trusting HR more than junior-level employees, but why that has changed remains unknown.
Women, in particular, are struggling with job satisfaction. Twenty-five percent of women reported a depress in job satisfaction, compared to 15% of men surveyed in the study. It’s important to mention that the survey mentions how at-home duties including childcare responsibilities have swayed the conversation, especially for women.
“As employees continue to work from home and in hybrid models, these findings have proven just how important it is for companies to drive two way communication regarding mental health. Internal communication tools such as surveys allow companies to gage how people are doing, feeling, and how HR can better support them,” Zehavi said. “During this time, many people are distracted in the day-to-day; they forget how disproportionately some are being affected. It is the responsibility of HR and leaders to tackle these issues head-on.”