The High Cost of Troubled Employees

“Twenty percent of US employees have problems that adversely affect their jobs and personal lives.” - Donald W. Myers/Virginia Commonwealth University

The Cost of Health Care

  • “Two-thirds of office visits to family doctors are prompted by stress-related symptoms.”
- American Academy of Family Physicians
  • “Sixty-nine percent of physician visits are by patients whose physical symptoms have emotional rather than organic etiologies.”
- N. A. Cummings/American Psychologist

The Cost of Marital Problems

  • “Marital problems not drugs, are seen as the biggest burden on business.”
- Ohio Psychological Association
  • “I lose 50% efficiency for one year when one of my executives goes through marital problems or divorce.”
- Ed Bonneau/President of Bonneau Sunglasses

The Cost of Accidents

  • Troubled employee lost-time accident rates are six times higher than non-troubled employees. *
  • Troubled employee accident rates are 3.6 times higher than non-troubled employees. *
  • Stress is involved in 85% of accidents. *

The Cost of Crime

  • 30% of business failures in 1981 were due to employee theft. *
  • Three major causes of employee crime are: gambling, alcohol and/or drugs, and supporting two households due to marital problems or divorce. *

The Cost of Emotional Problems

  • 65% of all terminations are related to emotional problems. *
  • Depression is involved in most of the 25,000 yearly suicides. *
  • Employees with emotional problems annually cost employers $1,622 per employee. *
  • Employees needing psychological care and not getting it, visit medical doctors twice as often for unnecessary care as those receiving treatment.
- EAP Digest /November/December 1993
  • The Journal of the American Medical Association found that doctors failed to recognize or diagnose over half the severe cases of depression.
- EAP Digest /November/December 1993

The Cost of Alcoholism

  • Alcoholic employees submit four times more grievances than non-alcoholic employees. *
  • Alcoholic employee HMO visitation rates are 12 times greater than non-alcoholic employees. *
  • Alcoholic employee absence rate is twice as great as that of non-alcoholic employees. *
  • Alcoholic employees cost employers 40% of their production level. *
* These materials compiled from EAP Digest Annual /1983-84

The Cost of Absenteeism

  • The average unscheduled absentee rate for companies with 2,500 to 3,000 employees is 2.2 percent. The average cost is $411 for each employee.
  • Companies with 250 to 499 employees spend $457 per employee on unscheduled absences.
- HR Focus /May 1992

The Cost of Replacing an Employee

  • “The average cost to replace a salaried worker is $6,175; an hourly worker is $676.”
- HRMagazine
  • “It can cost $10,000 or more to replace even a low-level employee.”
- Kent Davies via Boardroom Reports /February 1, 1991

Stormy Higgins helps organizations be more productive and profitable by assisting employees as they remove barriers to productivity. The result is employees producing as close to 100% as possible. The byproduct is healthier, happier employees doing their jobs in a more efficient manner, reducing risk and expenses, which translates to a higher level of profitability.

Since most organizations have the same knowledge and technology available, the key to adaptability, productivity, and higher profitability is people.

Profitability is the byproduct of employees that have:

  • Emotional and Physical Health - the availability of the resources needed to maintain the emotional and physical health to accomplish the job,
  • Attitudes and Morale - an environment that encourages employees to take pride in their work and to make a contribution to the success of the organization,
  • Management and Supervision - the coordination of their efforts and activities with efforts and activities of other employees,
  • Training - the knowledge to use or operate the tools and technology,
  • Tools and Technology - the right tools and technology.

When an employee is overwhelmed by an event, situation, or circumstance, the employee’s focus may shift from productivity to relief. The coping mechanism he or she may choose to find relief may interfere with his or her job performance and become problematic for the employee and the organization.

The high cost organizations pay because of troubled employees is well documented. As early as 1931, the American Railroad Association found that “only 10% of losses are related to structural and ergonomic deficiencies. The remaining 90% of injuries and losses can be attributed to behavior, attitude and/or work culture.”

While most organizations cannot stop most events from happening that cause employees to shift their focus from productivity to relief, the organization can provide a resource that may help employees prevent those events or avoid being overwhelmed by them.