Frontline workers feel undervalued, overworked and unsupported by their management. 

The results can be found in Microsoft’s Work Trend Index Special Report, called Technology Can Help Unlock a New Future for Frontline Workers.

The report says 63 percent of frontline workers want more help with physical exhaustion and 58 percent say they need more mental health support.

Customer-facing teams spoken to for the study were from industries such as retail, healthcare and hospitality, which have been hit hard by the pandemic. These were people who were more likely to be exposed to the virus from customers or patients, which caused staff shortages and pressure on services.

Due to the pandemic, 57 percent of UK frontline staff also say worker shortages are making it difficult for them to do their job. 47 percent, meanwhile, said the work days being too long also affected their ability to work. The outlook of these workers is bleak in general, as 69 percent believe that work stress will either stay the same or worsen in the coming year. 

The study found this mindset is leading many frontline employees to move jobs saying the top reasons are wanting more money and a better work-life balance. A third told the survey they did not have the right tech to do their job effectively, and over half had not received proper training to use digital tools.

However the report also found that 78 percent of frontline workers in the UK felt “very bonded” to co-workers because of the stresses they shared as a result of the pandemic. 

Microsoft says to combat these issues, bosses must listen and address their staff’s concerns. It advises listening to staff concerns over pay and staffing levels. 

“This research reveals a common fundamental need for a sharpened focus on sharing information, building skills and creating a healthy culture,” said Alysa Taylor, corporate vice president of Industry, Apps and Data Marketing at Microsoft. 

“We believe industry-specific technology tailored for the unique needs of frontline workers can help foster a more innovative, productive and engaged workforce.”





Feyaza Khan has been a journalist for more than 20 years in print and broadcast. Her special interests include neurodiversity in the workplace, tech, diversity, trauma and wellbeing.