One critical factor for determining work-life balance is the number of hours worked. Employees who work for fewer hours are said to have a good work-life balance. According to the OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation & Development), Netherlands ranks 2nd after Russia in the list of countries with the best work-life balance.
Only 0.5% of employees in the Netherlands work for 50+ hours a week compared to 11% in America. Poland is ranked higher than America given only 6.7% of employees work for 50+ hours. Full-time workers in Poland devote approximately 60% of their day to working. The rest of the time (approximately 14.4 hours) is spent eating, sleeping and engaging in leisure and social activities. 
It’s not surprising that work-life balance is centred on the amount of time spent at work given it has a direct correlation to personal health factors like stress. OECD’s Better Life Index states that long working hours impair personal health, increase stress and jeopardise safety.
Why is work-life balance a crucial issue in workplaces today?
The term work-life balance has been popular for a few years now thanks to millennials (individuals born between 1981 and 2000). Considering 75% of the global workforce by 2025 will be composed of millennials, employers are actively looking for ways to provide working environments appealing to this demographic. 
Work-life balance hasn’t been a critical issue for several decades since prior generations like baby boomers (individual born between the years 1945 and 1960) were exposed to hardships having been born immediately after World War II. For this reason, factors like making a living were more important than work-life balance.
The generation that came after baby boomers (Generation X or individuals born between 1961 and 1980) saw the importance of work-life balance having seen how their parents (baby boomers) struggle with long working hours. As a result, this generation focused on work-life balance on a personal level like prioritising time. With millennials, employers are being forced to overcompensate and take up work-life balance as a critical issue since this generation dominates the entire workforce.
Generational issues aside, work-life balance has been proven to prevent chronic stress, a common health problem in workplaces today. 
Chronic stress is linked to a multitude of other health problems like hypertension, chronic aches, insomnia, anxiety, depression as well as digestive and heart health problems common among millennial employees. Most importantly, these health issues are linked to burnouts which cost employers $120 to $190 billion yearly in healthcare costs in America alone. 
Work-life balance is, therefore, a crucial cost-saving factor for employers today.