Two-fifths of UK employees at 'breaking point'

Two-fifths of UK employees have said they are close to “breaking point” at work due to rising stress levels.

This is according to research conducted by the Chartered Accountants’ Benevolent Association (CABA),  the charity supporting the wellbeing of chartered accountants and their families, which found that 40 per cent of workers are close to breaking point.

It also found that the average employee loses out on five hours of sleep each week due to the pressures they face at work. To add to this, workers feel stressed for almost a third of their entire day.

Altogether, an employee spends more than three hours a week complaining about their boss or job, 31 minutes is used up complaining about their boss and two hours and 45 minutes moaning about their job.

Three-fifths (60 per cent) even said they feel stressed whilst on holiday as they are worried they will fall behind on work or how well they organised a handover.

Under three-quarters (70 per cent) of adults have vented about their workplace to a colleague, partner, family member or friend. However, 46 per cent of those who have felt stressed at work did not end up doing anything about it, hoping the problem would go away on its own.

The report also found the top ten reasons why employees complain about their job:

  • Amount of work in general
  • Lack of recognition/reward
  • Pay
  • Colleagues
  • The job itself
  • Company culture
  • Long hours
  • Amount of work compared to colleagues
  • Clients
  • Progression/career path


Richard Jenkins, psychologist and spokesperson for CABA, said:

Everyone will experience pressure day to day. A level of pressure can actually make us work better, however too much pressure that rises to an unmanageable level leads to stress. The working public needs to know how to manage their pressure to avoid reaching boiling point.

Finding ways to manage your stress is essential. It is also worth addressing the root causes of your stress to try to manage the source rather than just treat the symptoms.

If employees are suffering with a build-up of stress the first, and often most difficult step can be to simply talk about it with someone, be it a colleague, manager or just a family member. Sometimes just acknowledging that you have too much on can start to address the stress.

In order to gather this data, CABA asked 2,000 UK employees amongst various professions how they feel in regards to their job.





Darius is the editor of HRreview. He has previously worked as a finance reporter for the Daily Express. He studied his journalism masters at Press Association Training and graduated from the University of York with a degree in History.