Job Stress Index

Every year from 2014, we will be investigating three indicators of the effects of work-related stress on the health and productivity of employees: the Job Stress Index, the fatigue rate and the economic potential of improvements in the Job Stress Index. We will be supported in this by the University of Berne and the Zurich University of Applied Sciences.

Job Stress Index 2018


According to the results of the 2015 survey:

  1. Around one in five employees (22.5%) suffers from stress, i.e. has more pressure than resources at their workplace.
  2. Around one in five employees (22.6%) is fatigued.
  3. The fatigue rate is heavily influenced by conditions at work.
  4. Stress costs employers CHF 5 billion per year.
  5. Long-term pressures in the workplace have negative effects on health and job satisfaction, and increase the likelihood of staff leaving.
  6. The perceived obligation to be available outside of working hours has a negative impact on health.

Job Stress Index 2014: 24.8% of employees in Switzerland have proportionally more pressures than resources in their workplace

The Job Stress Index records working conditions and gives details on the ratio of resources and pressures in the workplace. We will be carrying out a representative online survey annually from 2014 to monitor the development of the stress situation.

The Job Stress Index 2014 totalled 50.03 points. This means that on average, employees had roughly the same level of resources available as pressures. However, almost one in four employees (24.8%) – or more than one million people – had a Job Stress Index of 54.1 points or higher. These individuals have more pressures than resources in their workplace. To ensure that they remain healthy and productive, the pressures should be reduced and the resources increased.

Fatigue rate 2014: one-quarter of employees in Switzerland are somewhat or extremely fatigued

The fatigue rate shows details of fatigue in employees and is a key figure with regard to well-being. Fatigue includes a feeling of being overloaded, loss of energy and being drained. It is the central and most obvious of the three dimensions of burnout syndrome.

The fatigue rate determined in the Job Stress Index 2014 is 24.0%. This means that around one-quarter of all employees in Switzerland (24.0%) – or more than one million people – are somewhat (17.9%) or very (6.1%) fatigued.

There is a strong link between the Job Stress Index and the fatigue rate: a high Job Stress Index is accompanied by a high rate of fatigue.

Economic potential 2014: a productivity gain of CHF 5.58 billion is possible if the Swiss economy optimizes its Job Stress Index

The economic potential demonstrates the potential productivity gains for the Swiss economy associated with improvements in the Job Stress Index. We calculate the degree to which total productivity would improve if a beneficial ratio of pressures and resources could be achieved for all employees.

The economic potential calculated in connection with the Job Stress Index 2014 is CHF 5.58 billion. This takes into account

  • improved productivity, accounting for 75% (CHF 4.258 billion), and
  • the reduction in absences, accounting for 25% (CHF 1.321 billion).