Workplace ‘golden age’ may be over, says employee survey expert

Companies can download employee survey results to identify low morale

Worker happiness peaked in 2008, according to results released today from the ETS employee survey benchmark database, which contains millions of employee views.

“We’ve just lived through a golden age of rising pay, profit and opportunity that led to a highpoint in employee happiness. Sadly, that chapter may have closed,” says Nicky Mintoff, consultant at ETS plc. Satisfaction and job loyalty – key measures of employees’ happiness – all climbed steadily in employee surveys for the five years to 2008. “Not surprisingly in the economic climate, employees’ satisfaction with many aspects of their working life seems to be in decline.”

ETS predicts employee surveys conducted throughout 2009 will identify a sharp fall in morale because of the economic downturn. Even in the last quarter of 2008, key indicators fell compared with the previous two years: job security dropped 14% and confidence that the company would meet its annual objectives plummeted by nearly a third (32%).

ETS advises companies to compare their employee survey results with the benchmark data that it is making available today, free of charge.

“If organisations can find out what is making employees feel negative, and how strongly those feelings are held, they can work to improve the situation. Taking action will help companies to ride out the recession and thrive afterwards,” comments Nicky. “Since most larger companies conduct employee surveys, ETS hopes that publishing the benchmark data will help them decide what to focus on to turn low morale around.”


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