The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has launched an annual survey designed to measure seven aspects of job quality for UK workers.
The UK Working Lives Survey is the first comprehensive measure of job quality in the UK. It combines previous research with a new 6,000-sample survey, representative of the UK workforce at all levels and across all sectors and regions.
The results show that while overall satisfaction at work is fairly high, there are significant numbers who are unhappy; there are also some major systemic issues with overwork, stress and a lack of training and development.
According to the survey, 64% of workers say they are satisfied with their job, one in five (18%) are dissatisfied and 11% report regularly feeling miserable at work.
Among workers in low-skilled and casual work, more than a third (37%) have not received any training in the past 12 months, while 43% do not believe their job offers them good opportunities to develop their skills.
The survey also found that many middle managers are overworked - 35% of these workers say they have too much to do and 28% say their work has a negative effect on their mental health.
Those in senior management roles are the most satisfied with their job. The key challenge for 28% of all senior managers is work-life balance. However, this group has the greatest access to flexible working, with 60% of these workers having the option of working from home.
The findings also show that:
- 45% of the surveyed workers think their pay is appropriate, 36% do not;
- 59% of workers would work even if they didn't need the money;
- 80% of employees rate their relationship with their managers positively;
- 63% of workers would like to reduce their hours.
Peter Cheese, CIPD chief executive, said: "The Government has been clear that it wants to improve job quality in the UK, but in order to create quality jobs you have to be able to know one when you see one.
"We have a record number of people in work, but we have to make sure that we have quality as well as quantity, and that means making sure every job is a good job."
Jonny Gifford, senior adviser for organisational behaviour at the CIPD, said: "The message is clear: healthy workers are happy and productive workers. If there's one ultimate aim in job quality it should be to improve the well-being of our workers."