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UK workers will ‘click off’ earlier this year, with many reporting Covid burnout



Almost half (46%) of UK employees admit that their productivity wanes in the run-up to the festive period, with the majority scaling back on work on or before 14 December.

A survey of 2,010 UK employees, commissioned by employee success platform Peakon, suggests that the pandemic has exacerbated the usual pre-holiday productivity slump, with 21% stating their productivity will dip earlier this year.

A further third of respondents said they are feeling on the brink of burnout after 2020. Younger people appear to be particularly at risk, with 42% of 18 to 34 year-olds claiming to be on the brink of burnout, compared to 24% of those aged over 55.

However, British workers also have mixed feelings about the new year.

Conducted following the news of successful vaccine trials, the research show that 35% are optimistic about the year ahead, but there is disparity across the regions, with ongoing tiering restrictions potentially affecting how employees feel in some places.

Scotland and Northern Ireland were among the least optimistic region, while the South West – where some areas are currently living with only tier one Covid-19 restrictions – was the most optimistic.

The employee optimism league table is as stands:

  1. South West – 42%
  2. Wales – 39%
  3. North West – 37%
  4. London – 36%
  5. North East – 34%
  6. Yorkshire & Humberside – 33%
  7. East of England – 32%
  8. South East – 31%
  9. West Midlands – 29%
  10. Scotland – 29%
  11. East Midlands – 26%
  12. Northern Ireland – 21%

Peakon chief executive and co-founder Phil Chambers said: “It’s concerning, if not entirely surprising, that a third of UK employees claim to be on the brink of burnout – unless employers tackle this empathetically and head on, organisations could suffer costly consequences in 2021.

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“As for the decline in productivity in the run up to the holidays, this isn’t unique to 2020,” he said, adding: “It may be frustrating, but it’s something that we all should be planning for annually.”



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