82 Percent of IT Pros Want to Quit Due to Stress

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According to the results of a recent GFI Software survey of 205 U.S. IT administrators, fully 82 percent of respondents said they're considering leaving their current IT job due to workplace stress and dissatisfaction with working conditions.

That's a steady increase from 78.5 percent in last year's survey.

The survey, conducted by Opinion Matters, also found that almost 45 percent of IT admins have missed social functions due to overrunning issues and tight deadlines at work, a significant increase from 38 percent last year.

Forty percent of respondents also reported missing time with their children, such as family dinner, helping with homework, sports games, recitals, etc., due to work demands on their personal time.

Thirty-eight percent said they lose sleep due to work-related stress.

The number of respondents experiencing stress-related illness also increased, from 25 percent last year to 27 percent in the most recent survey, and the number of respondents that reported feeling in poor physical condition due to work demands rose similarly, from 17 percent last year to 19 percent in the most recent survey.

The number of respondents saying a relationship or friendship had been severely damaged by work commitments intruding on personal life rose from 23 percent last year to 25 percent in the most recent survey.

Sources of stress appear to be shifting -- while 36 percent of respondents last year said unreasonable demands from management were the biggest contributing factor to workplace stress, that number dropped to 28 percent this year. Conversely, the number of respondents saying end users were the leading factor contributing to stress increased significantly from 16 percent last year to 23 percent in the most recent survey.

One constant was a lack of budget, which 16 percent of respondents both last year and this year said was their leading source of stress.

"The 2015 survey results clearly show a substantial deterioration of work/life balance and job satisfaction among the U.S. IT workforce -- quite concerning at a time when the IT sector is playing such a pivotal role in the growth of our economy," GFI Software general manager Sergio Galindo said in a statement.

"Smart employers understand that an over-stressed and unhappy workforce means less productivity, and the higher levels of illness, mistakes and staff turnover directly related to stress can have a very significant and direct cost to the bottom line," Galindo added. "Investing in worker happiness and in systems to simplify the job of the IT department is often far cheaper than replacing over-stressed or unhappy staff."

Almost 48 percent of respondents reported working up to eight unpaid hours of overtime a week, and a further 47 percent work eight hours or more of unpaid overtime every week.

Notably, things are even worse in the U.K., where 90 percent of respondents said they're actively looking for a new job due to stress.

Trustwave's 2015 Security Pressures Report also recently found that 54 percent of IT pros surveyed said they felt an increase in pressure to secure their organizations in 2014, and 57 percent anticipated experiencing more pressure in the coming year. "All signs point to turbulent times for IT and security professionals, and our findings back this up," Trustwave senior vice president of product management John Amaral said in a statement.

A recent eSecurity Planet article offered several tips on reducing workplace stress.