More U.S. Workers Are Satisfied With Their Jobs

April 25, 2016

More U.S. workers are satisfied with their jobs than at any time since 2005, according to the latest job satisfaction survey from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). Eighty-eight percent of employees said they were satisfied overall with their job. The most important contributor to employee job satisfaction was “respectful treatment of all employees at all levels,” cited by 67 percent of respondents. Other top contributors were compensation/pay, overall benefits, job security, opportunities to use skills and abilities, and trust between employees and senior management. 

 

Eighty-eight percent of employees said they were satisfied overall with their job (37 percent reported being very satisfied, and 51 percent somewhat satisfied). As the economy stabilized after the recession, employers began to focus again on factors that impact retention and employees found flexibility to seek out more compatible positions if they were ready to move on to new challenges, noted SHRM. The result is that workers are happy with their jobs.

 

Contributors to job satisfaction. 

For the second year, the most important contributor to employee job satisfaction was "respectful treatment of all employees at all levels," cited by 67 percent of respondents. Employees consider culture and connection to be of utmost importance, according to SHRM. Feeling appreciated for their time and efforts creates a bond between employees, management, and their organization.

 

Other top contributors were:

compensation/pay, overall benefits, job security, opportunities to use skills and abilities, and trust between employees and senior management. Compensation has increased in importance, with 63 percent of respondents citing it as a contributor to satisfaction — the highest level since 2006.

 

Generational differences. 

Workers’ priorities and levels of satisfaction were similar across generations. Eighty-six percent of Millennials indicated being satisfied, and similar percentages were reported for Generation X (88 percent) and Baby Boomers (90 percent). Although Millennials may have slightly different mindsets, on the whole, they tend to place significance on several of the same aspects of job satisfaction that Generation Xers and Baby Boomers do. When designing training and development programs or benefits strategies, consider elements such as career level and life stage — not just age — to build an approach that is appropriate for various groups of employees, advises SHRM in an accompanying analysis.

 

Employee engagement. The survey found that employees are moderately engaged with their jobs, similar to previous years, although workers in lower-level jobs appeared to be less engaged. Among the engagement findings:

  • 77 percent of respondents were satisfied with their relationships with coworkers and opportunities to use skills and abilities;

  • 89 percent were confident they could meet their work goals; and

  • 70 percent felt encouraged to take action when they saw a problem or opportunity in their organization.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

 

 

 

 

 

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