'Alarming low': Only 22% of employees satisfied with jobs

Job satisfaction spirals to all-time low, report says

'Alarming low': Only 22% of employees satisfied with jobs

Less than a quarter of employees across the world said they are satisfied with their jobs in 2023, sending the overall job satisfaction rates to an all-time low, according to the Arbinger Institute.

These were the findings of the institute's 2024 Workplace Trends report, which surveyed over 300 business leaders from across the world.

"Overall job satisfaction has hit an alarming low, with just 22% of professionals surveyed giving their company a rating of excellence," the report said. “Even fewer non-supervisory employees would describe their company’s job satisfaction as excellent (13%).”

According to the report, job satisfaction matters because employees with an excellent rating on them were three times more likely to be working for companies that experienced significant growth revenue increases.

These employees are also 3.5x more likely to have a positive outlook on future success and are six times more likely to report that their companies are extremely efficient.

Contributors to job satisfaction

More than half of the respondents (51%) said work-life balance is the biggest contributor to job satisfaction, beating out salary at 47%. Other factors include:

  • Meaningful work (38%)
  • Recognition and appreciation (34%)
  • Opportunities for growth (33%)
  • Relationships with employees (31%)
  • Relationships with leaders (27%)
  • Feeling safe, included (20%)

Ray Smith, SVP of People and Culture at the Arbinger Institute, said today's professionals want a work-place environment that complements their life outside work and where they can contribute with a purpose.

“We understand that work environments are swiftly evolving due to the surge in remote work and the increased emphasis on achieving work-life balance,” Smith said in a statement.

"Amid these changes, many employers may grapple with the challenges of adapting and modernizing their work cultures in line with evolving expectations."

Improving employee wellness

Employers need to look at well-being and mental health as part of the employee experience, according to the report, which found that the top factors for burnout include:

  • Heavy workload (55%)
  • Long hours (42%)
  • Feeling unappreciated (36%)
  • Lack of recognition (32%)
  • Unclear expectations (30%)

According to the respondents, employers can invest on the following in terms of employee wellness:

  • Flexible working hours (45%)
  • Paid mental health days off (44%)
  • Financial wellness (43%)
  • Mental health and stress management (41%)
  • Fitness activities (33%)

"Achieving employee job satisfaction is less about managing resources and more about empowering individuals," said Mitch Warner, a Managing Partner at the Arbinger Institute.

"When people are encouraged to bring their humanity to the workplace and they are empowered to unleash all their creative energy to do their work in way that is focused on their impact on others, the sky's the limit for what both they and the organization can accomplish."

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