Calm spaces – controlling workplace stress and absence

Stress is one of the main causes for work absences. Employees want to do their job to the best of their ability, but when they’re unable to, due to a lack of facilities or a poorly maintained working environment, it can cause anxiety and worry. 

From a broken computer to a burst pipe to a pothole in the carpark. These, seemingly small, issues cause complication and disruption, even discomfort. Given an employees’ work may already be challenging, added issues can just pile on the stress. Despite the fact these issues are usually completely out of employees’ control and not in their remit to fix. 

Stress and anxiety leading causes of work absences

Despite 73% of UK businesses believing staff wellbeing is important and should be high on the agenda, only 45% of employees have seen evidence of employer efforts to address wellbeing. In 2022 alone, workplace stress and anxiety resulted in the loss of 17 million working days. 

Productivity, morale and profit are all negatively affected by workplace stress, and as more senior management teams become aware of this, they are starting to look more closely at what can be done to keep their working environments as calm and stress-free as possible for workers.

Communication as important as fixing issues

As a facilities management services provider, we know how important effective communication is for getting issues and problems resolved. Bureaucracy, or poor communication, can often compound the negative impact of a workplace issue and delay a positive resolution.

If a staff member knows, when they report a broken desk, for example, it won’t be addressed for weeks on end, it’s immediately a frustrating and negative situation. Not only do they have to work at the broken desk, but they may feel stressed about not knowing when it will be fixed, if ever. The perceived lack of concern by their employer only exacerbates the stress. 

Well-maintained environments support staff

If staff know there is a clear process in place for workplace maintenance and fixes, including roles and responsibilities assigned, they’re more likely to feel safer and supported in their work.

While the break-fix approach is unavoidable for unforeseen circumstances, where workplaces are organised in their maintenance of a clean, tidy and safe environment, many issues are resolved before they become disruptive. There’s a checking and maintenance system to rely on, and an instilled pride in the workplace that gives the message, to customers and workforce alike, ‘we care about our environment, staff and how we operate’. 

Facilities management embeds a culture of responsibility

Comprehensive, business-focused facilities management services that take care of the working environment go a long way to minimise workplace stress. It’s not only about fixing issues, although with responsive FM services these are rapidly attended to, facilities management embeds a culture of responsibility through its effective monitoring, oversight and ability to respond with remedial action. 

Particularly where there’s a programme of planned preventative maintenance (PPM), based on thorough assessments, workplace functions and operation are taken care of. Whether it’s checking all workplace signage is in place, carparks and communal areas tidy and clear, AC and heating units working properly, PPM lifts the responsibility away from busy managers and creates a failsafe system for ensuring a high-quality working environment – also delivering reassurance and peace of mind.

Creating calm over chaos

The implications for improved health, safety and staff wellbeing of a well-organised, maintained workplace are undisputed. Still 79% of UK workers report they feel stressed at least once a month, inspiring many offices to do more. 

Calm spaces, free of clutter, rooms for meditation and ‘chill-out’ zones are increasingly provided by forward-thinking businesses who realise the benefits of a stress-free environment for their workforce and where productivity, motivation and innovation are all enhanced.

FM services – responsive and planned – supports and cares

Westbury FM supports businesses and organisations to directly improve employees’ wellbeing through better work environments. 

Responsive 24/7 with an experienced customer care team who understand each business’s operation, full system and service reporting through our purpose-built app and a wealth of responsive and planned services by a highly trained team, helps staff and managers be fully supported. 

Whether you want to create spaces of calm for employees or just ensure your offices and working environment are the most organised, healthy and employee-friendly they can be, we can help, and eradicate workplace stress for your workforce.   

“We have clients who report back to say how much less stressed they are knowing we’re taking care of their working environment.” – Sonia Murton, MD

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