CNBC and SurveyMonkey Release Inaugural Quarterly @Work Survey and Workplace Happiness Index

CNBC, First in Business Worldwide, and SurveyMonkey, a leading global survey software company, announced the results of their first-ever @Work Survey and the first reading of the CNBC/SurveyMonkey Workplace Happiness Index. The survey is created as part of CNBC’s @Work franchise, which includes a three-part event series exploring the future of work.

Each quarter, CNBC and SurveyMonkey poll over 8,000 professionals aiming to measure how Americans feel about their jobs across five key categories – pay, opportunities for advancement, recognition, autonomy and meaning.

The first measure of the CNBC/SurveyMonkey Workplace Happiness Index is an optimistic 71 out of 100.

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Key findings from the Q1 2019 CNBC/SurveyMonkey @Work Survey include:

  • 85% of respondents say they are very or somewhat satisfied with their jobs. Despite the overall optimism, only 9% of workers gave top ratings across all 5 categories of the Workplace Happiness Index. Additionally, 27% say they are not well paid and 30% have seriously considered quitting their job in the last 3 months.
  • Most workers say they are keeping up with technology and innovation in the workplace, but few are blazing new ground:
    • Barely a third of all workers see themselves as “ahead of the curve” on the technology front, a sense that craters among older workers. Overall, 60% say they are “about average” in their ability to keep up, while 7% get see themselves as falling behind.
    • 27% of workers say technology is threatening their job.
    • 71% of workers trust their direct supervisors to prepare them for changes in technology at work.
  • Bosses who build trust have happier workers:
    • Fully 65% of employees who don’t trust their direct supervisors to provide them opportunities to advance their careers have considered quitting their jobs in the last 3 months.
    • On the other hand, just 17% of people who trust their supervisors “a lot” to advance their career have considered quitting.
  • Women are less satisfied with their pay than men:
    • 76% of men say they are well paid, vs. 69% of women.
    • Additionally, the survey finds a smaller percentage of women in managerial, VP or c-level roles. Overall, 28% of report being managers or above, vs. 36% of men.
  • When asked “what is the one change that would most improve your job satisfaction”:
    • 41% say “higher salary.”
    • 14% say more training or learning opportunities.
    • 18% of workers who admit to being “very well paid” still say a higher salary would most improve their job satisfaction.

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“Our study clearly reveals that workplace happiness is richly nuanced. While a big majority of US workers are at least somewhat satisfied with their jobs, there are a lot of negatives when it comes to how people relate to their work,” said Jon Cohen, SurveyMonkey’s chief research officer. “Whether it’s the fact that a quarter of all young workers doubt their contributions are valued, or that 40% of all workers don’t see clear opportunities ahead, shows that simple ‘up or down’ measurements of job satisfaction never tell the whole story. If companies want to hire and retain great employees, they need to open up feedback loops to get at the ‘why’—learning what makes people happy and productive. Only through engaging in conversations at scale can managers bring meaningful change to the way their employees experience work and the workplace.”

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