March 28, 2011, USA TODAY
Employee loyalty is at a three-year low, but many employers are precariously unaware of the morale meltdown, according to a study out today. While frustrated workers are griping, groaning and secretly sending out resumes, employers think they are just as loyal as they were three years ago, MetLife reports in its 9th Annual Study of Employee Benefits Trends.
"Businesses are understandably focused on expenses," says Ronald Leopold, vice president of MetLife's U.S. business. "But they're taking their eye off the ball with human capital issues, notably what drives employee satisfaction and loyalty."
Morale fell -- and stress levels skyrocketed -- as cost-cutting employers froze wages, slashed bonuses and asked workers to assume the duties of laid-off colleagues during the downturn. Four in 10 employees say a heavy workload, unrealistic job expectations and long hours have created stress, reports a study by the American Psychological Association.
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