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New quarterly satisfaction index benchmarks UK employee engagement

Qualtrics, the leader in experience management software, today announced that two-thirds of U.K. workers are currently satisfied in their jobs and 13% say they are ‘extremely satisfied’, according to the Qualtrics Pulse – a new 2017 benchmark of how engaged today’s employees feel within their work environments.

The Qualtrics Pulse surveyed 2,300 U.K. workers using the Qualtrics Employee ExperienceTM management platform, which enables human resource and business leaders to monitor and improve the experience across the employee journey and prioritise the key drivers of engagement to reduce attrition and improve employee performance.

The Qualtrics Pulse, which is carried out on a quarterly basis, measures levels of employee engagement and job satisfaction according to gender, age, location, income and industry sector. The top insights can help businesses understand the experience gap between what their employees expect and what they actually deliver.

Workers in finance and travel love their jobs:

  • Satisfaction levels are highest in the finance sector (74%) and travel & leisure industry (73%), compared to 68% in retail, 67% in manufacturing and 66% in the public sector.
  • Meanwhile in the public sector, 32% of workers say they hardly ever, or never, look forward to going to work. In contrast, a quarter of retail workers almost always look forward to going to work.

Recognition outweighs pay, flexible working and frills:

  • Key driver analysis shows that engagement with business leaders, better recognition and career progression have the greatest positive impact on job satisfaction. In comparison, added benefits such as flexible working and even remuneration are generally considered less important on a day-to-day basis.

Ages 25-34 are the “golden years” for workplace satisfaction:

  • Job satisfaction peaks for U.K. workers between 25-34 years old, with 69% of people in this age group saying they are satisfied. Beyond age 34, job satisfaction declines.

Job satisfaction wanes after 12 months, but loyalty is built in the long term:

Job satisfaction is highest in the North East of England:

  • Around one in five (18%) employees from the North East are “extremely satisfied” in their job, compared to 11% in Scotland and Wales and 10% of workers in London and the Midlands. .
  • Young people in London are not as happy as their peers in other parts of the country–24% of under 25s said they were ‘slightly dissatisfied’ or worse in their current jobs, compared to just 18% of under 25s in the rest of the U.K.
  • Workers in Wales were the most vocal about their discontent, with nearly one in 10 saying they are “extremely dissatisfied” with their job.

Churn is highest in media and advertising:

  • While the public sector has most dissatisfied workers, it’s most likely to hold onto its staff with 68% expecting to be working at the same organisation in two years’ time.
  • Media and advertising companies are likely to have the hardest job in preventing staff churn. Just 54% of employees in this sector say they can see themselves working at their current organisation in two years’ time, compared to 67% in the IT & tech sector and 66% in manufacturing.

Commenting on the launch of Qualtrics Pulse, Sarah Marrs, Employee Experience Specialist, Qualtrics, said, “In recent years we’ve seen organisations place more emphasis on their employee experience as a critical lever to help shape their customer, brand and product experiences.  We’ve also seen the techniques available to measure the employee experience evolve. Our Qualtrics Pulse provides a layer of data that many companies simply don’t have access to– uncovering the real-life factors that really influence the behaviour, loyalty and performance of an employee.”

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