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More needs to be done to boost happiness in Britain’s workplaces

Office Genie surveyed 2,000 UK office workers and asked them about factors affecting their happiness in the workplace. While the average level of workplace happiness for British employees sits at 3.63/5 [1], we found some serious causes for concern.

Key findings from Office Genie’s Workplace Happiness Report:

  • Junior staff are the least happy in the workforce
  • Mental health provisions are severely lacking and wellness initiatives are desired
  • Feeling ‘overworked’ is the top stress factor for UK workers
  • Many employees are denied flexible working
  • Workplace design has a significant impact on happiness levels

Office Genie surveyed 2,000 UK office workers and asked them about factors affecting their happiness in the workplace. While the average level of workplace happiness for British employees sits at 3.63/5 [1], we found some serious causes for concern.

Junior staff are the least happy in the workforce: they rank at 3.40 on the happiness scale - comparatively, business owners rank at 4.20 - a significant 25% higher.

Of further concern was the fact employees with mental health issues feel unsupported in the workplace: Over half (51%) of such respondents believe their place of work offers inadequate levels of support. Amongst this demographic the most called-for support method is wellness initiatives, with 45% of people with mental health issues saying they would be beneficial - well above the overall average.

We also discovered a number of major stress factors in the modern workplace. By far the most common of these is feeling overworked (47%). This is followed by a lack of control over the role (25%), and not feeling fulfilled (25%). The latter two were particularly prevalent amongst junior staff.

In contrast, the report uncovered a number of key incentives employees feel would boost happiness: Top is pay; 67% saying a pay rise would increase their happiness with work. Following this is flexible hours (33%) - equal with bonuses (33%).

Despite the desire for flexibility, many workers are not afforded the privilege of remote working. Nearly half of employees (46%) cannot work from home but a considerable 74% of them believe it would improve their happiness with work.

The workplace itself was also found to have a significant impact upon happiness. Feeling comfortable with the design of a space was found to make a huge 33% difference to happiness levels.

A desire for more privacy was also discovered: 40% of people feel they do not have sufficient levels of privacy in their place of work. And, perhaps accordingly, open-plan office house the least happy employees.

www.officegenie.co.uk


[1] Those surveyed were asked to select if they were very happy, quite happy, neither happy nor unhappy, quite unhappy, or very unhappy in their workplace - this was then converted this into a 1-5 scale (1 least happy, 5 most happy).