by Byron Connolly

Australians dissatisfied with their jobs

Apr 15, 20153 mins

Australian workers would not recommend their workplace to others, are unwilling to do more than is expected of them and are probably on the hunt for another job, a nationwide survey has found.

The State of Employee Engagement in Australia survey – conducted by Engaged Marketing – asked 3361 Australians about their attitude towards the current workplace and employer.

The study reported a low national employee engagement score of negative 23 per cent. The score was calculated by subtracting the percentage of detractors (43 per cent) from the percentage of promoters (20 per cent). Only 37 per cent were found to be ‘passives’, or neutral, the survey found.

Employee loyalty to their current workplace was low at 55.3 per cent, and workers are disinclined to do more than what is expected in their daily job, with an average discretionary effort score of only 5.8 out of 10.

The low discretionary figure is an alarm bell for organisations as staff who give more effort are the ones who deliver customer and client experiences worthy of recommendation, said Engaged Marketing’s managing director, Christopher Roberts. They also find new ways to increase efficiencies and reduce costs, he said.

“Interestingly, the discretionary effort scores of ‘promoters’ are 77 per cent higher than those of ‘detractors’,” he said.

“Given 43 per cent of the population are classified ‘detractors’ of their workplaces, this a real human resource issue for organisations that may result in greater costs to recruit and retrain new employees,” Roberts said.

“Employee loyalty is low, which not only means that many are thinking of leaving but you also have to wonder how productive an employee with this mindset is going to be while they’re still working there.”

Roberts said the results were of great concern to local companies and pointed to significant productivity, referral and recruitment issues.

Employers needed to do more to engage their staff, which in turn would improve workplace recommendation, discretionary effort and loyalty, he added.

“Staff engagement is more than just staff satisfaction – it’s about ensuring staff feel genuinely valued, are having some of their core human needs met, and understand the role they play in delivering business strategy.

“Ultimately, this boils down to the type of leadership in the organisation. Leaders need to understand exactly what is driving employee commitment, and then link the organisation’s business strategy to employees’ core needs, motivations and purpose to drive engagement,” he said.

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