Health and WellbeingOne in ten HR professionals feeling undervalued

One in ten HR professionals feeling undervalued

New research shows those in HR are falling short of their own wellbeing

Almost 70 percent of those operating within human resources don’t have a sense of wellbeing in their lives, according to HRD Connect’s latest report on wellbeing and engagement.

In the wake of the pandemic, the HR community has faced multiple challenges. HR has played a critical role in supporting colleagues through providing new communication channels and mentoring to help to alleviate stress and anxiety. But HR professionals also catch themselves experiencing similar problems.

“The cultural attributes that are required to support flexible work aren’t there enough,” says Lindsey Lagreid, senior advisor at Limeade. “Namely: trust. As an employee, I should feel that ‘yes, my employer has to make decisions, but I trust that I am a factor in them.

“People know if they are trusted of not, and a human being has more energy to show up when they feel like they’re being trusted and given responsibility.”

As part of the report, 250 HR professionals from across Europe and various industries were asked to rate their company’s engagement and attempts to foster happiness.

When asked about stress levels, 74 percent of participants said they were under some degree of stress. Of those, 7.69 percent felt it was often unmanageable and 33.84 percent said they felt burnt-out.

Stress is an unfortunate by-product of the pandemic, and HR practitioners are “having to make some extremely tough calls right now”. Separately, Limeade found the burnout rate had increased to 72 percent in the middle of 2020 compared to 42 percent at the end of 2019.

One in ten respondents said they don’t feel valued by their organisation, and only 75 percent said they feel included.

“I don’t think organisations have done a great job of helping managers see what it looks like to be a great manager right now,” says Lagreid. “We’ve been confronted by a great deal of humanity and I’m not sure some managers are ready for that.”

Some respondents said employers were exacerbating problems by failing to help their employees to adapt. More than a fifth (21.5 percent) said they do not have the resources required to do their job effectively.

Around 70 percent agreed their company provides a positive employee experience compared to less than 10 percent who disagreed with the statement. Participants who disagreed commented “poor change management”, “lack of diversity” and “over-focus on bad news with no encouragement from the top” affected employee experience.

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Thirty percent of respondents ranked ‘employee wellbeing’ as the top priority for their organisation. ‘Communicating with and reaching employees’ came next with 20 percent. Respondents said they were impressed by their companies’ attempts to adapt to the pandemic.

Over 61 percent said trust was the most important attribute that shows their organisation cares about them followed by ‘supportive’ (49 percent) and ‘values the whole employee’ (45 percent).

Seventy-eight percent of participants agreed that the strength of their culture influences the company’s attractiveness to potential candidates.

“Most people have a list of three companies they will never work for. And that is expensive. If talented people won’t work for a certain company because of how they treat their people, which is a HR thing, it’s huge,” says Lagreid.

Eighty-eight percent agreed with the statement their work had purpose compared to seven percent who disagreed and five percent who neither agreed nor disagreed.

Read the full report here: HR Leaders’ Wellbeing and Engagement report 2020

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