Poor mental wellbeing costs UK contact centres almost £1 billion each year

mental wellbeing contact centresPeople working in contact centre roles say that work-related poor mental wellbeing is making them less productive, including answering fewer calls and taking more sick days – costing the industry over £990m in lost productivity every year. That’s according to a new study, Duty of Care Gap [registration] from MaxContact. The contact centres industry is a huge contributor to the UK economy, employing over 800,000 people across the country. Yet the industry is facing a mental health crisis, with 83 percent workers saying their work is taking a toll on their mental wellbeing, with staff reporting high stress levels (62 percent), anxiety (48 percent) and feeling overwhelmed (46 percent).

This poor mental health and wellbeing at work is costing the industry millions in lost productivity at a time when staff attrition is already high. An overwhelming majority (95 percent) say that work-related mental wellbeing problems are making them less productive at work, losing on average six hours of work per month, or nine working days per year to poor mental wellbeing. This is also translating into sick days – staff report taking on average 2.78 sick days due to work-related mental wellbeing problems. This lost productivity is costing the industry £990milllion per year.

The poll also suggests many businesses are already taking steps to help. Over half (52 percent) have mental health first aiders in place, but this is in stark contrast to physical health and safety, where each workplace is legally obliged to have nominated first aiders and carry out regular risk assessments.

The overwhelming majority (75 percent) of contact centre workers say they would be more likely to say in their current role if their employer made a bigger concrete commitment to improving mental wellbeing in their workplaces. Also, 46 percent say they would consider another role in the contact centre industry if it would be better for their mental health.