Why is it a priority?
Work stress is defined by the International Labour Organization as “harmful physical and emotional response caused by an imbalance between the perceived demands and the perceived resources and abilities of individuals to cope with those demands”. Adverse health effects such as high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, skin conditions and depression can arise from stress.
A local study revealed that 52% of Singaporean workers felt that their stress level had gone up. Organisational politics, workload and lack of support were found to be the top three sources of workplace stress.
The WSH Institute, working in collaboration with Institute of Mental Health, Changi General Hospital, Health Promotion Board and the Workplace Safety and Health Council, is currently validating a tool called iWorkHealth. iWorkHealth is a psychosocial health assessment tool. Companies using the tool would be informed on the prevalence of work stress and harassment, which work stressors to focus on to reduce work stress in the organization, with suggestions on possible interventions and sources of help. This web-based tool will be available to researchers, with functionalities to enable researchers to conduct more detailed analysis.
To reduce work stress, we propose the following research area:
- Develop and test effectiveness of solutions to manage and reduce work stress and harassment, preferably using iWorkHealth.