According to research conducted by GRiD, the industry body for group risk, employers believe that their Gen Y employees are affected by stress and anxiety more than any other generation.
In three out of four areas, Gen Y (age 26-44) is affected more than any other demographic:
- Fifty-eight per cent are affected by stress and anxiety related to home life (such as caring responsibilities, managing difficult relationships etc).
- Fifty-seven per cent are affected by stress and anxiety related to work (such as pressures of overwork, uncertainty of future, etc).
- Fifty-seven per cent are affected by stress and anxiety related to finances, debt, etc.
In addition, 49% are affected by stress, anxiety and uncertainty as a consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic – just pipped by Gen X (age 45-56) at 50%.
Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for GRiD explains: ‘Employers may typically think that it’s the older generation, Gen X, that has more responsibility and more worry, but our research shows otherwise. Younger age groups can have less stability in their lives and feel the burden of responsibility heavily.’
Home life and work life both cause anxiety for this generation, and these research findings give a clear indication that support is much needed. Employers can only do so much themselves to alleviate the stress and anxiety – such as looking at workload, training and providing the tools to do a job – but providing access to professional help can often be incredibly valuable.
Debt management, budget planning, financial guidance, counselling therapies, mindfulness apps are all widely available within group risk employee benefits and can be a great way for employers to help their staff deal with the practical implications of stress and anxiety.
Moxham continues, ‘Some employers may still think of group risk benefits (employer-sponsored life assurance, income protection and critical illness) purely as financial insurance policies, but in practice they are so much more. We see many employees get the most value from these when they utilise the embedded benefits. These are as wide-ranging as counselling right through to budget planning.
‘When stress and anxiety clearly affect so many, providing access to such benefits is a very tangible support and they make all the difference to a workforce.’
The theme for this year’s World Mental Health Day is ‘Mental Health in an Unequal World’, and it’s important that access to support is offered equally to all generations without bias or assumptions.
Moxham concludes: ‘Group risk benefits help employers offer some of the most egalitarian benefits available to their staff, with the embedded benefits available equally to every level of employee.’