Corporate executives are suffering more from mental health issues compared with their employees when it comes to adapting to remote work, according to a study by Oracle and Workplace Intelligence.
About 53 percent of C-suite executives have had difficulties with mental health issues in the remote workplace, compared with 45 percent of their employees, the February 2021 report found. It surveyed 12,000 employees, managers, human-resource leaders and C-suite members across 11 countries.
India, the United Arab Emirates, China and the U.S. had the most workers reporting the pandemic had negatively impacted their mental health.
The study said that C-suite executives also struggled the most with adapting to a virtual lifestyle, with 85 percent saying they had “significant” remote-work challenges that included collaborating with teams virtually (39 percent), managing increased stress and anxiety (35 percent) and lacking workplace culture (34 percent).
In addition, they were 29 percent more likely to struggle with learning new technologies for remote work than employees. Still, once the executives adjusted to the new normal, they were 26 percent more likely to record increased productivity than their workers.
The report also found that 73 percent of corporate executives polled would prefer to talk to a chatbot or digital assistant about their mental health than a human. That compares to 61 percent of employees.
“Amidst the challenges of the pandemic, companies can use this moment as a catalyst for positive change in their organizations,” Dan Schawbel, managing partner for Workplace Intelligence, said in the report.
The study also found that younger workers are feeling the most burnout because of the mental health effects of the pandemic and are more open to asking artificial intelligence for relief.
About 90 percent of Generation Z workers, or those born after 1996, are most likely to be negatively impacted by the pandemic than other generations, it said, adding that Gen Z workers are twice as likely to work extra hours during the pandemic, while Millennials are 130 percent more likely to have experienced burnout than Baby Boomers.
“The way the pandemic changed our work routines makes burnout, stress and other mental health issues all too easy,” Emily He, senior vice president at Oracle Cloud HCM, said in the report. “Everyone has been affected in different ways and the solutions each company puts in place need to reflect the unique challenges of employees. But overall, these findings demonstrate that implementing technology to improve the mental health of employees needs to be a priority for every business.”