Fatigue's Impact in the Workplace

Fatigue is a state of mental and physical exhaustion caused by prolonged periods of physical or mental activity or lack of sleep. It is a common issue in many workplaces and can have a significant impact on productivity, safety, and overall health. According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS), fatigue is a major concern in the workplace, and it affects up to 43% of Canadian workers [1].

In this blog, we will explore the impact of fatigue on the workplace, with a focus on productivity, presenteeism, incidents, injuries, and safety critical occupations. We will also introduce Rebel Sleep Institute's Workplace Sleep and Fatigue Program and its solutions for addressing workplace fatigue.

Fatigue can significantly affect productivity in the workplace. Workers who are fatigued may have difficulty concentrating, making decisions, and completing tasks efficiently. According to a report by the Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture, fatigued workers are 70% less productive than those who are not [2]. Moreover, workers who are fatigued are more likely to engage in presenteeism, which is the act of coming to work despite feeling unwell or tired. This can lead to reduced productivity, as well as an increased risk of errors, accidents, and injuries [3].

Fatigue can also increase the risk of incidents and injuries in the workplace. According to a study by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, fatigue was a factor in up to 20% of all workplace accidents [4]. Moreover, workers who are fatigued are more likely to make mistakes, have slower reaction times, and take longer to recover from injuries [5]. This can result in increased absenteeism and workers' compensation claims, as well as decreased productivity and morale.

Workers in safety critical occupations, such as healthcare, transportation, and construction, are particularly vulnerable to the effects of fatigue. These workers often work long hours, irregular shifts, and have high levels of mental and physical demands, which can increase the risk of fatigue-related incidents and injuries [6]. According to a report by the Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture, up to 60% of truck drivers experience fatigue-related issues [2]. This highlights the importance of addressing workplace fatigue in safety critical occupations.

Rebel Sleep Institute offers a comprehensive Workplace Sleep & Fatigue Program to help organizations address the impact of fatigue in the workplace. The program includes Sleep-Health Treatment Program, Wellness Fair Booth Support, Fatigue Risk Management Consultation, and Sleep and Fatigue Educational Solutions.

This confidential program offers a comprehensive custom web-based Sleep-Health Employment Screening Tool that can assist in identifying employees who may be susceptible to sleep and fatigue-related issues. This cost-effective tool provides personalized support and resources to improve the employees' sleep health, resulting in increased productivity and overall well-being. Once employees complete the screening tool, they meet with a trained sleep professional who reviews the results and discusses recommendations. The professional evaluates the available diagnostic and treatment options and works closely with the employees to develop a personalized health strategy. This program ensures that each employee receives individualized attention and support to address their specific sleep needs.

Rebel Sleep Institute can provide support for organizations hosting wellness fairs by providing educational resources and sleep health assessments to employees. The healthcare representative will also aid in discussions with employees regarding sleep health, guide them on accessing sleep services in their region, and suggest further resources and support. This onsite support tends to be welcomed by employees and is often used as a catalyst to generate interest in addressing sleep concerns among the team. In addition to booth support, lectures, workshops, and additional education may be provided.

Rebel Sleep Institute can facilitate an audit of existing fatigue-related programs, documentation, and strategies used to identify areas of improvement. They can also develop customized fatigue risk management solutions tailored to the organization's needs. Typically consultants meet with members of the leadership team to gain an understanding of any specific organizational needs, identify potential shortcomings, and discuss how objectives may be achieved. This is a highly customizable program utilizing the Rebel Advisory Council composed of industry experts.

Sleep and fatigue educational solutions are available for employees and leadership in a variety of formats, including in-person, remote, and through self-directed learning (SCORM). This diverse educational offering can help raise awareness and promote healthy sleep habits and fatigue management strategies.

Topics include:
  • Making Sleep a Priority
  • Introduction to Fatigue in the Workplace
  • Introduction to Fatigue in the Workplace for Leaders
  • Accident and Incident Safety Investigator Training Program
  • Comprehensive Fatigue Risk Management for Leaders
  • Investigating Human Fatigue Factors
  • Shift work, employee scheduling, and reducing risk.

The Rebel Advisory Council features a diverse group of experts with a deep understanding of the causes, effects, and management of fatigue in various fields. As part of their mission to promote awareness and understanding of fatigue-related issues, members of the Council are also available to deliver education programs, including those outlined above, as well as keynote speeches on a range of topics related to fatigue.

Drawing on their extensive experience and expertise, members of the Advisory Council can offer insights into the latest research, best practices, and emerging trends in the field of fatigue. Whether you are looking to educate your organization on the impact of fatigue on safety and productivity, or seeking to develop effective strategies for managing fatigue in your workforce, the Council's keynote speakers can provide valuable guidance and practical solutions.

Topics include:
  • The physiological and psychological factors that contribute to fatigue
  • The effects of fatigue on safety, productivity, and health
  • Strategies for managing fatigue in high-stress, high-performance environments
  • The role of technology in detecting and preventing fatigue-related incidents
  • Best practices for designing fatigue-resistant work schedules and shift rotations
  • The impact of fatigue on different industries, such as healthcare, transportation, and energy
  • The legal and regulatory frameworks that govern fatigue management in the workplace.

Fatigue is a serious issue in the workplace that can impact both individuals and organizations. With the prevalence of fatigue in Canadian workplaces, it is important for organizations to take proactive steps to address the issue. Rebel Sleep Institute's Workplace Sleep & Fatigue Program offers a comprehensive solution for addressing workplace fatigue, including Sleep-Health Employee Screening, Wellness Fair Booth Support, Fatigue Risk Management Consultation, and Sleep and Fatigue Educational Solutions. If you are interested in learning more about how to incorporate these solutions for your employees in the workplace, contact Rebel Sleep Institute to get started. By prioritizing sleep health and fatigue management, Canadian organizations can create a safer, healthier, and more productive work environment for their employees.

Team, Rebel

  • 1 Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. (n.d.). Fatigue. Retrieved from https://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/psychosocial/fatigue.html
  • 2 Canadian Centre for Health and Safety in Agriculture. (2016). Fatigue Risk Management: A Guide for Canadian Agriculture. Retrieved from https://www.ccohs.ca/products/publications/Fatigue_Risk_Management/
  • 3 Canadian Mental Health Association. (n.d.). Presenteeism. Retrieved from https://cmha.ca/documents/presenteeism
  • 4 Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. (2009). Fatigue: A Hidden Danger in the Workplace. Retrieved from https://www.ccohs.ca/products/infographics/fatigue/
  • 5 Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. (n.d.). The Effects of Fatigue on Work and Safety. Retrieved from https://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/psychosocial/fatigue_effects.html
  • 6 Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety. (n.d.). Fatigue in the Workplace: Overview. Retrieved from https://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/psychosocial/fatigue_workplace.html