29 April 2014

Just how happy is our workforce?

While 60% of workers are happy in their jobs, your occupation affects your overall job satisfaction. Do these survey results ring true for you?

60% of workers are happy in their current job, with the most satisfied staff being bosses, managers and people who work outdoors. These are the findings from three recent surveys that focused on job or life satisfaction.

A third of workers will look for a new job this year

According to a survey by Robert Half, while 60% of employees are happy in their current job, one third are considering looking for a new position. [Tweet this] The top reasons for looking elsewhere were:

  • wanting a higher base salary 
  • a lack of promotional opportunities 
  • boredom
  • wanting a better work-life balance 
  • dissatisfaction with company leadership 
  • deciding to change career 

Robert Half Job Satisfaction Infographic

The happiest occupations

Research from the Cabinet Office focused on the happiness of different occupations, with members of the clergy at the top of the list and pub landlords at the bottom. Is your occupation in the top ten?

  1. Clergy
  2. Chief executives and senior officials
  3. Managers in agriculture and horticulture
  4. Company secretaries
  5. Quality assurance and regulatory professionals
  6. Health care practice managers
  7. Medical practitioners
  8. Farmers
  9. Hotel and accommodation managers
  10. Skilled metal, electrical and electronic trades supervisors

At the bottom of the list are pub landlords, debt and cash collectors, telephone salespeople, bar staff, security guards and window cleaners. 

Occupations that involve working outdoors tended to have higher life satisfaction, as did those with higher earnings (no surprises there). However, there are careers that buck this trend. Fitness instructors have a mean income of £10,378 but good satisfaction levels (ranked at number 15 on the list) while taxation experts have a mean income of £45,360 but limped in in 89th place for satisfaction. 

You should want to be the boss

There are quite a few management staff in the top ten occupations and this fits with the findings from a PewResearch survey earlier in the year, which found that bosses tend to be more satisfied than non-managerial staff, in both their home and working lives. Compared to other workers, bosses:

  • are less likely to say they’re in their job just to get by - 13% vs 36%
  • believe they are paid fairly -  62% vs 54%
  • are less likely to be looking for another job -12% vs 23%