More than half of employees feel that their emotional wellbeing has been negatively impacted

Research from Perkbox has revealed that despite being on a job retention scheme, furlough has led to 61% of its workers feeling concerned over their future job security. In contrast, one in five (19%) who weren’t furloughed by a firm on the scheme said they felt more secure in their job a result.

A further 42% said their feared for the future of their company due to their employer’s reliance on the scheme.

And while 45% said they enjoyed their time off as a result of being furloughed, 58% said they felt that their emotional wellbeing has been negatively impacted in the past month, in light of lockdown and regulatory changes.

Guilt and resentment

The job retentions scheme has also led to 29% of those on furlough feeling guilty about not working, while just over one in five (21%) felt guilty for extra work that colleagues had to take on in their absence.

Those who remained working over this period had to work harder (19%) and experience more stress due to taking on extra responsibilities (18%), which ultimately impacted emotional wellbeing (16%). This resulted in one in 10 feeling resentful for their furloughed colleagues’ time off, the research showed.

Redundancies and return to work

As many as 65% stated that they believe senior leadership should take a pay cut before considering redundancies – just 14% said they would not expect this to be the case.

And as the government encourages businesses to return to work, less than half of employees (47%) feel safe in regard to returning to work (equal between office and non-office based workers), with almost a quarter (24%) feeling ‘unsafe’ about this transition.

Just 15% of businesses have set a fixed date for returning to work, a further 22% of employees have received no clear guidance on how to return to work. Furthermore, less than a third (31%) reported that their employer had implemented all of the necessary safety equipment to return to work, with just 30% establishing a clear back to work plan. Only 4% have indicated that their company is planning a permanent switch to remote working.

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