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PDA call on employers to reduce workplace conflict

The PDA is calling on all pharmacy employers to read the latest report from Acas, the non-departmental public body of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) regarding the cost of workplace conflict on businesses.

Thu 13th May 2021 The PDA

Acas has published a new report, Estimating the Costs of Workplace Conflict, which estimates that this costs UK employers £28.5bn every year, an average of just over £1,000 for every employee. This estimate is based on the total cost to organisations in handling workplace conflict that includes informal, formal and legal processes as well as the cost of sickness absences and resignations.

The PDA knows that alongside the costs to employers, there is a significant individual impact on the wellbeing of employees and often their families too. As a pharmacist-led organisation, the PDA recognises that prevention is better than cure, and as a trade union the PDA understands that employers working positively, with members of an independent trade union is the best way to avoid workplace conflict occurring through early, local intervention.

The PDA encourages all pharmacy employers to read the Acas report and consider how recognising the PDA at their workplaces, just as Boots, Lloyds and others have done, can help them save the costs of unnecessary workplace conflict.

The Acas report shows that nearly half a million employees resign each year due to conflict, and handling disagreements and complaints early before employment relationships are damaged can help save businesses money.

Acas Chief Executive, Susan Clews, said:

“A failure by employers to deal with conflict early can be costly to businesses and our study estimates that these costs add up to nearly £30bn a year.

Poor conflict management can also cause staff stress, anxiety or depression and impact workplace productivity. There’s a clear benefit to everyone in handling problems as early as possible.

While our main findings relate to just before the pandemic took hold, our report reveals potential for increased conflict as organisations try to adapt to new changes after COVID-19.”

Workplace conflict can lead to staff stress, anxiety or depression which has a knock-on effect on productivity. The report identifies effective conflict management as critical in maximising productivity and efficiency in organisations.

The report highlights that conflict will be more likely as organisations adapt to a new normal following the coronavirus pandemic, as problems suppressed during the crisis will start to rise to the surface and will need effective responses from organisations.

The full benefits of an employer working with an independent trade union, such as the PDA, are only available to union members and the PDA encourages any pharmacist, who is not yet a member, to join now. Increased membership also gives the PDA greater influence to encourage employers to work positively with the union.






The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

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