01427 875013 or 07774 951282 hayleydrakes@btinternet.com

The Cost of Stress


Forward thinking organisations take employee wellbeing very seriously, realising staff are their most valuable asset and any cost incurred in maintaining their wellbeing is in actual fact a long-term investment, saving on costs of absence, recruitment and training.

Good Morale = Good Productivity = Low Staff Turnover & Low Absence 

Please see below facts and figures from the Health & Safety Executive, Investors in People and findings of Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Management 2015 Survey and a study commissioned by Public Health England all relating to health and workplace stress.

STRESS = Absence, Poor Morale and High Staff Turnover
CHAIR MASSAGE = Physical and Mental Wellbeing of the Workforce

Sit there and let your stresses float away! R E L A X and ‘Chill Out’.

Chair Massage is ideal for the Workplace to incorporate in a STRESS REDUCTION PROGRAMME as it can:

  • Reduce stress and anxiety
  • Reduce back/neck/shoulder problems – great maintenance and/or preventative treatment
  • Reduce absenteeism and associated costs
  • Motivate staff, encourage staff loyalty and improve morale – Massage is a tangible way in which staff can feel valued at work
  • Improve work performance
  • Aid recruitment and retention of staff

Sessions of chair massages can be booked for a minimum of 6 clients per session (or 7 including one FREE treatment for the ‘workplace co-ordinator’ who assists in organising the therapy sessions). The cost is £20 per person and experience shows that a 50% contribution from the employer is ideal as £10 is usually affordable for the employee.  Also, by prior arrangement other therapies can be adapted for the workplace.  Could be used as a Staff Incentive e.g. a reward for targets met or after completion of a successful Year End.

Everyone enjoys being praised, thanked and empowered.  Enhancing wellbeing in the workplace is a massive boost for morale, making your staff feel valued, enhancing mutual respect, reducing staff turnover and increasing loyalty.

CASE STUDY undertaken by Hayley Drakes and Tracy Murphy using Chair Massage on 12 office based staff, who received a monthly chair massage each month for 3 months.  A questionnaire was given before and after each of their massages to collect comments and results.

Positive feedback was received from all 12 participants, 9 of whom had not previously experienced any form of massage at all.  Here are their comments :-

  • More energy
  • Lighter and looser
  • Shoulders don’t feel like boulders anymore
  • Happy and smiley
  • More refreshed
  • Great feeling of well-being
  • Vibrant and alert
  • Wonderful – really look forward to it
  • Had a better night’s sleep
  • Felt amazing
  • Could run a marathon
  • Headache lifted
  • Feel like on holiday
  • Calm and tranquil and relaxed
  • Pain in between shoulders gone
  • Walking taller
  • Life back in me
  • Relaxed and refreshed
  • Very light and floaty in body
  • Very enjoyable
  • Stress levels felt to go down and overall mood improved

To experience some of these feelings – get a massage!

Clients reported improvements up to as much as 60% in all the following areas measured :-
energy, aches and pains, looseness, work stress, morale, loyalty, wellbeing, stress at home, vitality, mood, sleep, relaxation, work performance, mental state, alertness and concentration, motivation at work.

Other interesting findings were:

    • 77.5% said massage as part of an employment package would encourage them to stay or seek employment with that company.
    • 71% felt massage could prevent absenteeism.
    • 74% thought monthly was the ideal frequency for massage.
    • If massage was offered in the workplace, most employees would prefer the employer to pay, but 67% would be prepared to contribute towards the treatment, whereas only 32% would be willing to pay the full cost.

Some Facts and Figures

Massage reduces workplace stress by 30% (Shulman K A & Jones G E, The Effectiveness of Massage Therapy Intervention on Reducing Anxiety in the Workplace – Journal of Applied Behavioural Science Vol 32 Pt II pp 160-173)

The main findings of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development Management 16th National Survey of Absence Trends (2015) involving 578 organisations and 1.5m employees:

  • The average cost of absence is £554 per employee.
  • Absence has slightly increased to 6.9 days per employee from 2015 though this is lower than the 2013 level.
  • Two fifths of respondents reported that absence due to work related stress has increased with very few reporting a decrease and larger organisations were more likely to report an increase with workload being the most common cause of stress.
  • Less than three fifths of organisations are taking steps to identify and reduce stress in the workplace. Just 8% of organisations have a ‘stand alone’ well-being strategy.
  • Just 25% of organisations achieved their 2014 target absence level. Those that achieved their target were more likely to promote health and well-being. 32% of organisations achieving their absence target offered on-site massages compared to 22% of the organisations who did not achieve their target.
  • Musculo-skeletal problems, back pain and stress are common causes of short term absence after minor illnesses like colds and headaches.
  • Stress, musculo-skeletal problems and back pain are in the top five reasons for long term illness along with mental ill health and acute medical conditions, with stress actually topping the list for non-manual workers.

INVESTORS IN PEOPLE have Health and Wellbeing Award
Investors in People reported that 200 million days are lost at work due to sickness and absence, costing £13 billion to UK businesses in direct costs (not NI, training time, management time, lost customers and revenue)

Health & Safety Executive Report

Work related stress, anxiety and depression statistics in Great Britain 2014/15
Work-related stress, depression or anxiety is defined as a harmful reaction people have to undue pressures and demands placed on them at work. Average of 23 days lost per case. Here are some of the main points in the report:

  • An average of 23 days lost per case.
  • In 2014/15 stress accounted for 35% of all work related ill health cases and 43% of all working days lost due to ill health.
  • Stress is more prevalent in public service industries, such as education; health and social care; and public administration and defence.
  • By occupation, jobs that are common across public service industries (such as health; teaching; business, media and public service professionals) show higher levels of stress as compared to all jobs.
  • The main work factors cited by respondents as causing work related stress, depression or anxiety (LFS, 2009/10-2011/12) were workload pressures, including tight deadlines and too much responsibility and a lack of managerial support.


Dr Justin Varney, Interim Deputy Director for Health & Wellbeing (Healthy People), Public Health England, said of the following report:
“This evidence review highlights workplaces as a key setting for improving people’s mental and physical health, as well as their overall wellbeing. Having a healthy workforce can reduce sickness absence, lower staff turnover and boost productivity. Employers can’t afford to wait until staff burnout happens; it is in their interest to implement healthy interventions which can prevent the main causes of it, including stress and musculoskeletal conditions.”

A report undertaken by health researchers at Leeds Beckett University has reviewed the most effective ways to treat and prevent burnout and work-related stress, and revealed organisational interventions in the workplace may be more effective than individual interventions alone.

The report, published on 2 March 2016 and commissioned by Public Health England and prepared by the Centre for Health Promotion Research at Leeds Beckett, provides an overview of how individual and workplace interventions can prevent burnout and work-related stress.

The full report is available at