We keep hearing about how unhappy and overworked employees are. But recent research indicates that a huge majority of people are satisfied with their jobs.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, conducted in late spring, found that 87.5% of workers were satisfied with their job.
That’s a couple points below the all-time high of 89.4% in February 2008. But it’s up from the all-time low of 86.9% in July and August of last year.
And given how tough things have been for both employers and workers over the past couple of years, we’d say that 87.5% is a pretty good number.
Areas of concern
There are a few key groups whose job satisfaction isn’t great, however.
Satisfaction is down the most among Hispanics and those with less education in the first four months of 2011 compared with 2008. And while black American workers’ job satisfaction is essentially the same in 2011 as it was in 2008, they have consistently been among the least likely to be content with their work.
Job satisfaction has declined more among low-income workers than among those with higher incomes. For example, workers with an annual household income of less than $36,000 are among the least satisfied with their jobs in 2011, at 82.1%.
Not surprisingly, workers with an annual income of $90,000 or more are among the most satisfied, at 91.9%.
What’s it all mean? First, all the doom-and-gloom we’ve been hearing about morale levels may be just a tad over-hyped. But it’s clear that there are continuing issues concerning job satisfaction among minority and lower-paid employees — and those issues likely translate into turnover problems.