Despite incidences of burnout dropping five percentage points over the past year, two-fifths (45 per cent) of U.S. employees say they’re feeling burnt out at work, according to a new survey by Eagle Hill Consulting.

The survey, which polled more than 1,000 respondents, found women and younger workers are reporting the highest levels of burnout. Indeed, more millennials (52 per cent) reported experiencing burnout (52 per cent) than their generation X (45 per cent) and baby boomer (32 per cent) counterparts, while more women (48 per cent) reported experiencing burnout than men (41 per cent).

In addition, more than half (51 per cent) of respondents cited their workload among their top five causes of burnout, as well as staff shortages (45 per cent), work-life balance (42 per cent), lack of communication and support (38 per cent) and time pressures (34 per cent).

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Among those who said they experienced burnout due to staff shortages, a majority (84 per cent) said the impact is from covering the workload for unfilled positions, followed by helping others learn their job (39 per cent), training new hires (36 per cent) and recruiting and interviewing new hires (22 per cent). The number of respondents who said they feel comfortable telling their managers or employers they feel burnt out dropped from 62 per cent in 2022 to 57 per cent in 2023.

More than two-thirds of respondents said a four-day workweek (67 per cent), increased flexibility of working hours or days (65 per cent), decreased workload (65 per cent) and better health and wellness benefits (60 per cent) would reduce their burnout, as would continuing to work from home or working from home more (56 per cent), reduced administrative burden (53 per cent), more onsite amenities at their physical workplaces (50 per cent) and the ability to relocate to a new location or work from multiple locations (39 per cent).

“It’s good news that worker burnout levels are steadily trending downward since the high-stress days of the pandemic,” said Melissa Jezior, president and chief executive officer of Eagle Hill Consulting, in a press release. “But employers shouldn’t be complacent when it comes to taking action to reduce worker burnout. Burnout levels are still too high and could inch upward as more workers are required to return to in-person work. While employees value in-person work, they have expressed concerns about work-life balance and commute times when they are in the workplace.”

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