Written by Isabelle on June 17, 2021

Why the 'new normal' isn't working for young people

Our new study of 1,000 white-collar workers has found an outbreak of poor quality sleep and fatigue among the majority of Australian office workers, but this was particularly stark for workers under 25.

The research found a lack of dedicated workspace for workers under 25 had some significant knock-on effects. They are twice as likely to work from their bed (55%) or bedroom (56%) than over 25-year-olds (bed 23%, bedroom 28%). Gen Z office workers were also far more likely to have forgone fresh air (Gen Z 55%, 25+ 42%), skipped meals (Gen Z 49%, 25+ 39%) or work in their PJs (Gen Z 48%, 25+ 32%).

“Working in your pyjamas or from the comfort of your bed might seem harmless, but they’re some of the most common actions that blur the boundaries between work and home life for flexible workers,” ISS CEO Dr Adam Fletcher says.

There were some positive implications for Gen Z’s though, with almost half (47%) taking the opportunity to nap during the day, compared to over 25-year-olds (28%).

“Working from home can be particularly difficult for younger workers, who often don’t have a dedicated workspace or live in shared houses with lots of distractions,” Adam says.

“We recommend communicating with family and housemates to set clear boundaries around work and personal time, whether that’s scheduling who’s working from the kitchen table, or agreeing to take calls in a separate room to keep noise down.”

Education the key to sleep empowerment

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“We’ve found progressive leaders are quick to recognise the link between high-performance teams and a healthy sleep culture – and that culture starts with education and empowerment,” Dr Fletcher says.

Based on decades of applied research and practical training across a range of industries, businesses and government agencies, Integrated Safety Support has channelled that knowledge into online training courses and smartphone applications that are simple to deploy and integrate into the modern workplace.

What we know is that engaging and easily applicable tools are more vital than ever. We created the Eclipse Subscription Service because we know that fatigue can be a daunting problem to tackle, especially for office workforces that haven’t had to address it before. We created it to ease the stresses of the modern workplace, to make hybrid work easier to balance and to address inequalities in wellbeing by empowering through knowledge.

You can read our research featured in the AFR here (full article access):

You can access the media release featuring all of the results of our research here:

Blog post written by Isabelle

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