Take your leave; survey shows nearly half are scared to
The Sector > Research > Take your leave; survey shows nearly half are scared to

Take your leave; survey shows nearly half are scared to

by Freya Lucas

July 24, 2019

New data from WorkScore has shown that employees who take their annual leave, rather than acquiring it for extended periods of time without taking a break, are more productive, less stressed, and happier at work. 


Over 250 employees were consulted for the research, which found that one in five interviewed had not taken any annual leave in the past 12 months. Nearly half of those interviewed felt that their employer did not encourage staff to take annual leave benefits, with a similar number saying they felt “guilty or anxious” before taking leave.


WorkScore asked employees to rate their productivity when at work, finding that those who rated below average also felt more anxious and guilty prior to taking leave, and 50 per cent of this group checked work emails regularly (most days) when on leave.  


Those employees that rated above average for productivity felt less anxious and guilty prior to taking leave, and only 30 per cent checked in regularly, giving them a chance to switch off from work and relax. 


This group also rated that their workplace actively encourages them to take their leave benefits. Data from WorkScore confirms that taking annual leave improves the mental wellbeing of employees, showing that those who had taken annual leave in the last 12 months rated as less stressed at work, had the highest work life balance and were the happiest at work.


“Employees are recognising that taking annual leave is a way to improve wellbeing, and reduce burnout,” Suzanne Deeming co-founder of WorkScore said.


Preventing burnout was one of the top three reasons for using annual leave, the WorkScore data found. Improving personal health/wellness and better work life balance were given as the other top two reasons. 


“Encouraging employees to take their full annual leave entitlement should become a business priority as it improves employee productivity, morale and reduces stress,” Ms Deeming said. 


“Workplaces should also discourage employees from working whilst on leave and allow them to fully switch off from work,” she added.

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