It’s no surprise that depression is a leading cause of workers seeking help from their companies’ employee assistance programs. But you might be shocked to hear which group is most often affected: Millennials.
Depression and Work: The Impact of Depression on Different Generations of Employees, a recently-released white paper from EAP provider Bensinger DuPont & Associates (BDA), found that depression accounts for 17% of users of EAPs.
One in five Millennials reported experiencing depression, the highest of any generation. Depression appears to decline with age, as Gen X and Baby Boomers were less likely to report depression.
The study, which explores the relationship between depression and decline in work performance through a multigenerational lens, is the second in a 4-part series of white papers examining generational differences in the impact of anxiety, depression and risky alcohol use on work performance.
To assess the impact of depression on the workforce, BDA investigated the relationship between reported depression and declines in work performance by generation. The data was taken from a cumulative report of 7,883 individuals seeking EAP services from January 2013-June 2014.
Other findings in the study:
- Presenteeism is the most common decline in work performance experienced across each generation, followed by absenteeism, disciplinary action, and relationship issues.
- Depressed Millennials reported the highest rates of presenteeism among the three generations; Boomers reported the lowest.
- Boomers with depression reported the lowest rates of absenteeism. Gen X reported the highest rates of absenteeism, slightly edging out Millennials.
- Boomers were the most likely to report conflict in their relationships at work –almost twice as likely as Gen X and Millennials to report declines in workplace relationships due to depression.