Americans' Job Satisfaction Hits 36-Year High

New York, NY, May 11, 2023-"Job satisfaction hit a 36-year high in 2022, reflecting two effects of the tight pandemic labor market: The quality of jobs improved as wages and work flexibility increased, and workers moved into positions that were a better fit,” reports the Wall Street Journal.

“Last year, 62.3% of U.S. workers said they were satisfied with their jobs, according to new data from the Conference Board, up from 60.2% in 2021 and 56.8% in 2020. The business-research organization polled workers on 26 aspects of work, and found that people were most content with their commutes, their co-workers, the physical environment of their workplace and job security.

“Among the happiest workers: people who voluntarily switched jobs during the pandemic and individuals working in hybrid roles with a mix of in-person and remote work. Men’s satisfaction was higher than women’s in every component, especially in areas such as leave policies, bonus plans, promotions, communication and organizational culture.

“The survey of 1,680 workers was conducted in November, before a spate of layoffs at high-profile companies and rising worries about a potential recession. While unemployment remains low, a recent decline in job openings suggests that workers have fewer options and might be feeling more anxious about their job security, said Selcuk Eren, a senior economist at the Conference Board.

“The organization predicts that the U.S. will enter a short, shallow recession later this year and that unemployment will rise to 4.4% from the current 3.4% by the first quarter of 2024.

“‘Once unemployment goes up, once we hit a recession, there will be fewer people changing jobs they were unhappy with,’ Mr. Eren said. The satisfaction measure hit its lowest point-42.6%-in 2010, in the aftermath of the 2007-09 recession. The Conference Board began surveying workers on satisfaction in 1987.

“Of the 26 measures the Conference Board polled workers on, the biggest year-over-year increases in satisfaction came from work-life balance and workload. Some of those metrics might look different today, as many employers have reversed policies or toughened requirements for in-person work.”