Tired and fatigued staff are:
- Less productive
- A greater safety risk
- Less engaged at work
- Cost more
Alert and energetic staff:
- Are more productive
- Make fewer errors
- Are more engaged at work
- Contribute more
Tired and fatigued staff are:
- Are more susceptible to ill health
- Achieve less during the day
- Struggle with conflicting responsibilities
- Suffer from poor communication
Alert and energetic staff are:
- Less likely to be absent
- Achieve more during the day
- Lead a more balanced life
- Communicate better
The quantity and quality of sleep has declined, even in recent times, meaning no organisation is immune to the issues arising from fatigue. Tiredness and fatigue has a significant adverse impact on organisational efficiency and productivity as well as employee health and safety. This leads to increases in costs and lower revenues.
Fatigue and organisational productivity
A recent survey by the American College of Occupational Medicine together with the Integrated Benefits Institute found that the greatest cost affecting organisational productivity is fatigue (second was depression and fourth was sleep disturbances). Many organisations have already undertaken, and continue to offer, excellent occupational health and well being initiatives. However, in terms of productivity, there appears to be a disjoint between the interventions undertaken and interventions required. When tired we are less productive, creative, innovative and less able to spot new opportunities.
Fatigue and health (physical and mental)
Poor quality and insufficient sleep has been shown to have an adverse effect on the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease. A study by UCL and Warwick found that reducing sleep time from 7 hours to 5 hours a night doubled the risk of dying of heart disease. Tiredness and fatigue also has a negative impact on resilience, mental health. When tired we find it more difficult to cope with difficult situations – leading to increased stress and our immune system is affected meaning we are more susceptible to illness. Lack of sleep leads to increased health costs and staff costs.
Fatigue and safety
There is also a clear body of evidence to show the negative impact that tiredness and fatigue has on safety. Did you know that sleeping 4 to 5 hours a night impacts performance to the same extent as being legally drunk? Fatigue in your staff may not lead to major disasters on the scale of Exxon Valdez, Chernobyl, Herald of Free Enterprise or other major incidents (caused largely or in part due to fatigue) but tiredness will be costing your organisation time and money.
Fatigue and other consequences
When we are tired we are less productive and unable to operate at our optimal levels leading to presenteeism (estimated to cost the UK economy c. £15bn per annum). Work life balance and employee engagement also suffer. We are more susceptible to ill health and absenteeism. When tired our vocabulary reduces and with it our communication skills meaning that working relationships and customer service both suffer.
Third Pillar of Health Ltd has worked with leading sleep research scientists to put together our fatigue management programme. Contact us to find out how we can help your organisation.
Understand the level and impact of tiredness and fatigue in your organisation
With training comes the requisite knowledge to make small changes with big impact.
Seminars & workshops
Alert and energetic staff make greater contributions in all aspects of life.