Campaign to end loneliness

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Workplace loneliness


Tackling workplace loneliness and supporting employees to build social connections can create a more productive and resilient team. Organisations where employees have a strong sense of organisational identity can lead to improved quality of work, higher wellbeing and greater engagement. This is why we provide training for organisationsBy addressing loneliness at work, we can support colleagues to feel more engaged and connected with each other.

As part of the cross-government loneliness strategy, we established the Loneliness Employers Leadership Group with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. This group was set up to deepen our understanding of loneliness at work and identify what employers can do. This work was taken forward by the Tackling Loneliness Network at DCMS as a task and finish group.


Employers and Loneliness

Employers and Loneliness (May 2021) was commissioned by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport draws on consultation with a rich network of businesses and employers who recognise loneliness in the workplace and support employees’ social wellbeing.

The consultation identified five key themes to tackle loneliness at work:

  1. Culture and infrastructure: Identifying what really matters to employees. This includes aligning with corporate values and embedding loneliness into other wellbeing and welfare activities.
  2. Management: Support and guidance which can help managers to identify and help colleagues who are experiencing loneliness. It also highlights the training that managers might need.
  3. People and networks: How people have used networks to tackle loneliness including whilst working remotely.
  4. Work and workplace design: How employers have supported a dispersed workforce and the methods which can promote visibility and connections.
  5. Wider role in the community: How some employers have sought to tackle loneliness beyond our immediate workforce.

Loneliness at work

Loneliness at Work (January 2023) authored by the British Red Cross and Campaign to End Loneliness for the APPG on Tackling Loneliness and Connected Communities explores the extent on loneliness at work in the UK, how it’s changed since the Covid-19 pandemic and provides useful insights based on a unique population-wide survey of workers experiences of loneliness and relationships at work.

  • More than one-in-ten workers often or always experience aspects of loneliness at work, while nearly half of workers feel lonely some of the time.
  • Disabled workers and those with long-term health conditions affecting their day-to-day lives are more likely to report general loneliness than those without (24%, compared to 9%).
  • Workers from minoritised ethnic groups are more likely to feel that they often or always have no one to talk to at work (13%, compared to 9%) than white workers. They also feel that their colleagues are like strangers to them (37% of workers from minoritised ethnic groups, compared to 27% of white workers.)
  • Senior managers report higher levels of general loneliness – 32% of senior managers are often or always lonely, which is nearly twice the average, and are also more likely to feel that their colleagues are like strangers.
  • Contact with colleagues is not enough to prevent loneliness and home workers are not lonelier than those working onsite. However, 84% of onsite workers agree they feel close to their colleagues, compared to only 44% homeworkers.
  • Changes in working location during the Covid-19 restrictions led to improved relationships for many.

More information


Loneliness at Work (Jan 2023) explores the extent of loneliness at work in the UK and whether different groups are impacted differently. Authored by the British Red Cross and the Campaign to End Loneliness for the APPG on Tackling Loneliness and Connected Communities, underscores how different groups experience loneliness in the workplace and shows how changes at work since the Covid-19 pandemic may have affected loneliness at work.

Connect and thrive (May 2023) We are pleased to be referenced in this report by leading researcher on workplace loneliness, Dr Sarah Wright of the University of Christchurch. The report goes deeper into the psychology of workplace loneliness with ideas for individuals facing loneliness at work.

Employers and Loneliness (May 2021) was produced by the Campaign to End Loneliness on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport. This guide is a starting point to a wider conversation about what organisations can do to address loneliness. It follows a consultation with thirty-four businesses and employers who recognise loneliness in the workplace and support employee’s social wellbeing.

Addressing workplace loneliness this National Inclusion Week (September 2023) With more than 1 in 10 of us experiencing loneliness at work often or always, we explore why fostering a sense of belonging and connection is an essential part of building a truly inclusive workplace.

Addressing loneliness in the workplace (June 2023) Insights from a Tackling Loneliness Hub member event, an online community that we run on behalf of the DCMS.

How can we support people with life-limiting illnesses to work while they are able to and want to? (March 2022) Joanne Smithson, Head of Implementation and Learning at our host organisation, the What Works Centre for Wellbeing, explains more about the connection between loneliness and wellbeing and being diagnosed with a terminal illness.

How can employers support people who are lonely at work?  (May 2021) Highlights the key findings from the Employers and Loneliness report as well as key themes in tackling loneliness at work.