A third of British employees (33%) say that Brexit has already had a negative impact on their business, according to new research from Tiger Recruitment. According to the findings, uncertainty over the UK’s exit from the EU is leaving staff feeling more stressed and anxious (47%), while businesses have been unable to make decisions about the direction of the business (46%), start new projects (36%) or take risks (33%).
The research, carried out by YouGov, questioned 1,000 GB employees on their experiences and concerns around Brexit in the workplace. As the 31st October deadline looms and there is still no clarity over what kind of Brexit UK businesses can expect, the findings indicate that many companies are still not able to apply a ‘business-as-usual’ approach to work. In turn, this is impacting the behaviour and outlook of employees.
“It’s more than three years since the EU referendum, and while businesses have shown incredible resilience, they are crying out for certainty and stability in the political landscape,” says David Morel, CEO and Founder of Tiger Recruitment. “Businesses and their employees have to be able to make big decisions, take risks, and experiment in order to grow. Yet, as things stand, Brexit is stopping them from doing this. We’ve reached a state of limbo, which is stifling innovation and growth.”
The study also reveals a high level of concern about what lies ahead, with nearly half of employees (46%) reporting that they are worried about the impact that Brexit will have on their employer’s business in the future and in turn how this will affect them. For those who are worried, job insecurity is the overriding concern, specifically the potential of stagnating wages (58%), job losses (56%) and fewer opportunities for career progression (30%).
“With the two Brexit factions both resolute in their positions and unable to compromise without losing face, it seems inevitable that the current limbo will go down to the wire,” continues Morel. “While I’m confident that businesses will remain resilient whatever the outcome, it is understandable that employees are feeling worried and insecure about the future. Employers must address this issue head on by placing extra focus on employee communication and motivation, to help allay these fears and keep employees engaged throughout the uncertainty.”
London workers most impacted
Breakdown by region shows that businesses in London have been the most heavily affected by Brexit. Nearly half (47%) of Londoners say that their business has been negatively impacted, while more than half (54%) say they are worried about how they will be affected in the future (compared to 33% and 46% respectively across the rest of the country). Scottish workers are also more concerned than the rest of the country about the future impact of Brexit (54%).
Analysis of industry sectors reveals that IT/telecoms and
manufacturing businesses have been most negatively affected by Brexit
uncertainty (both 40%), while those in hospitality and leisure (18%) have been
the least affected. Meanwhile, legal workers are the most worried about the
impact that Brexit will have on their organisation in the future