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Londoners particularly affected by poor working conditions

Poor working conditions mean workers are taking more sick days and are less productive

Four in 10 (39%) employees have left a job because of poor working conditions, according to research from CABA, a charity that supports chartered accountants' wellbeing.

The survey of 2,000 adults found that Londoners are particularly badly affected, with 47% of respondents stating they had left a job in the capital because of poor working conditions – defined as poor management, unsupportive colleagues or other factors that had a negative impact on wellbeing.

As a result of poor wellbeing, 42% of those polled said they had taken more sick days, and 63% said they had taken longer to get jobs done. London again fared particularly badly, with 53% of workers from this region claiming to have taken more sick days as a result of a decrease in their wellbeing and 71% seeing their productivity negatively affected.

Kelly Feehan, services director for CABA, explained that the nature of work is changing. “It is no longer somewhere to turn up, do a job and go home,” she said. “So much more is demanded from employees nowadays with our ‘always on’ culture, so how we treat them needs to change too.

“Employers that lack a holistic wellness policy will most likely be seeing these dips in productivity and decreased employee loyalty. Employee wellbeing is not a nice-to-have; it’s a necessity if employers want to attract and retain the best talent.”

Increased workplace demands were identified by respondents as a wellbeing concern they face every day. Two-thirds (67%) said they looked at emails outside of working hours and 55% said they do not get enough sleep.

Feehan suggested that firms take a closer look at their wellbeing policies. “For businesses to get the best out of their workforce they need to remind them to take care of themselves – this forms a basic duty of care,” she said. “Sleep deprivation costs the economy £40 billion a year, but employers are not encouraging employees to take simple wellbeing measures such as going home on time or keeping off emails to give their brains a break.

"If the workforce is now going to work for longer – both in terms of hours and years – we need to ensure we’re not burning them out. Encourage them to go home on time at least three times a week and have a break for lunch. The results may speak for themselves.”