Trade body Group Risk Development (GRiD) revealed that only one in five of the businesses it questioned is placing mental health at the top of its health risk list.
However, there was hope in that 31 per cent of those questioned said that managing stress and other mental illnesses would be made a top priority for 2013.
Katharine Moxham, spokeswoman for GRiD, said that stress is still not taken seriously enough, especially when compared to acute medical conditions.
"These figures prove just how big an impact stress can have on employers when managing the well-being of their business and the implications it may have on absence rates," she added.
"It also provides a timely reminder for businesses to take action to avoid stress in the workplace developing into more serious, often preventable, conditions."
Figures published in the Health and Safety Executive Annual Statistics report revealed that around 27 million days are lost to work-related stress every year.
Posted by Emily Smith