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City firms warned about rocketing costs from stress

Added: (Mon Nov 06 2000)

Pressbox (Press Release) - 6 November, 2000
City firms warned about rocketing costs from stress
.Although many City jobs are well paid, working conditions seem designed to deliver a high octane cocktail of stress factors・, says Ed Radkiewicz, chief executive of Businesshealth, a company that measures the business cost of poor health.
.Burn out has often been seen as inevitable in some work cultures・, Radkiewicz added. .But apart from the human cost, this is poor management. Our research demonstrates that certain types of pressures not only diminish energy levels, resilience and physical wellbeing - they also provoke high performers to seek remedies by changing jobs.・
.Job churn represents a great opportunity for head-hunters, but a shocking cost for City businesses. The total cost can reach 20% of annual payroll. With their margins, City firms think they can carry this cost: but what about the impact on clients, colleagues and other contacts? Not to mention the benefits to their competitors when knowledge and experience walks away?・ asks Radkiewicz. .The best employers invest in their staff・s wellbeing; in the long run they will attract and retain the best staff.・
Businesshealth says that its Health Balance audit and risk assessments, developed in association with Arthur Andersen・s Human Capital Services, can always identify the sorts of workplace situations that will encourage staff to look up the Executive Search entries in their personal organisers.
The workplace is increasingly recognised as the major source of mental ill-health:
X 61% of people believe that job problems are more likely to cause mental illness than marriage breakdown, bereavement or loneliness (the mental health charity Mind).
X Depression is the second most disabling illness for workers after heart disease (ILO). Between five and six million working days are lost yearly in the UK due to workplace stress and its effects.
A powerful Channel 4 documentary screened on Sunday 29 October illustrated best practice in diagnosing stress and a valuable range of validated wellbeing solutions. Dr Stephen Williams, featured in this project, is an adviser to Businesshealth, who are providers of the stress diagnostic tools and wellbeing methods seen in the programme.

NOTES FOR EDITORS
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) study of five industrialised countries (including the UK) was published 10 October. Major causes of stress and depression include the IT revolution, ever-changing work patterns and the demand for higher productivity.
Businesshealth is a company that approaches the question of health at work from a unique perspective, by accurately quantifying the economic impact and subsequently optimising the health of employees to achieve peak business performance.
For more information, contact:
X Businesshealth website: www.businesshealth.co.uk
X Ed Radkiewicz or Keith Phillips at Businesshealth on (020) 8323 8200
X Pat Roberts or Victoria Gibbens at Abel Hadden & Company on (020) 7629 8771

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