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Research Library

Emerging Dynamics of Workplace Stress of Employees in a Large Organization in Hong Kong

    • Published: 2018
    • Adrian Low1 and Rollin McCraty2
    • Adrian Low, Rollin McCraty, (2018). Public Administration and Policy. DOI: 10.1108/PAP-10-2018-008.1. Hong Kong Association of Psychology, Hong Kong, Hong Kong. 2. Institute of HeartMath, Boulder Creek, California, USA.
    • Download the complete paper, click here.



Research on workplace stress measurements varied without much accuracy and effectiveness. The purpose of this paper is to introduce a new quantitative assessment tool emWave Pro Plus (Institute of HeartMath) and compare heart rate variability (HRV) results with the Personal and Organizational Quality Assessment (POQA) and the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS).


This research opted for a correlational study which involves 85 full-time employees who were working at least 40 h per week in a large corporation participated in this study. The POQA and PSS were used to correlate with HRV.


Astonishing findings emerged in this study. Significant positive correlations were found between emotional stress and HRV, and between intention to quit and HRV. In other words, the researchers have to make sense the following surprising findings: the higher the emotional stress an employee faces, the healthier they are. Healthier employees may have higher intentions of quitting their jobs. The surprising results may be attributed to personality, culture, emotional regulation and age among others.


This research fulfills an identified need to validate quantifiable stress measurements especially in a corporate environment. The research also shows promising results, and future studies should continue to tap into HRV as an objective measure of mental health and workplace stress.


Mental health, Job stress, Heart rate variability (HRV), Workplace stress, Objective stress measure, Hong Kong employees.