Today is National Stress Awareness Day, a commemorative event from Mind to help relieve stress to improve the nation’s mental health. The mental health charity is calling on employers to start the conversation about stress in the workplace by creating a Stress Awareness Space. The aim is that staff can share their thoughts and feelings when they are feeling stressed. For freelancers and the self-employed, they do not have this support network in place, so how can they help deal with their own workplace stress?
The mental health of the UK workforce has never been discussed more than now. As we enter a new decade, the world of work is changing and the workforce is to. More people than ever before are ditching the traditional 9-5, full-time rat race in order for greater fulfilment, autonomy and earning potential in the freelance arena. However, with this change comes a lack of infrastructural support, human resources departments, and an extensive professional support network. This can cause considerable strain on a single person to essentially run their own company whilst fulfilling a contract using their expertise and skillset.
With this wealth of talent within the gig economy, ETZ Payments, the back office recruitment specialists, have polled 2003 freelance workers across the country in a nationally representative survey to ascertain the mental health of the UK’s flexible workforce. The startling research reveals that a third of freelancers no longer enjoy work as much as they used to. Furthermore, a quarter of freelancers can’t afford big-ticket commitments such as weddings, holidays, and home improvements due to the freelance payment structure, stating that they have to work between 2 to 5 jobs at one time to support my income.
Nick Woodward, CEO of ETZ Payments, tells YCB: “As we recognise National Stress Awareness Day, we must remember the thousands of Brits that are recognising the changing role of work in their lives, with more and more people ditching the 9-5 to gain greater flexibility and achieve a better work-life balance. Initiatives in large companies are all well and good, but for self-employed and freelance workers, they don’t have this infrastructure in place to help deal with stress and other mental health concerns.
For them, the major hurdle that they have to tackle on a day-to-day basis is chasing invoices. This is an avoidable stress for thousands of people and reducing the amount of invoice-chasing for these people is a guaranteed way to reduce the stress for the freelancing population.“
In our capitalist world constantly driving towards profit, it is commonplace to push mental wellbeing aside and focus instead on obtaining visible results. As a freelancer, you are incredibly lucky to create your own schedule and work jobs you are passionate about, however stressing over late invoices will clearly add copious amounts of stress to your day to day life. Here, ETZ Payments can help! The team are working with recruiters to offer same-day payments to ensure that flexible workers are getting paid for the work they do in a timely manner. At ETZ Payments they hope their services will relieve a huge amount of stress of the millions of freelancers and self-employed people that have to spend a large proportion of their week chasing payments.