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‘Good’ Jobs are Hard to Come By


Only 39% of employees would classify their jobs as being good, defined as a perfect mix of excitement but not too much stress.

These are the findings from the latest report Reflections on employee well-being and the psychological contract by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

Nic Marks, Head of well-being research at nef (the new economics foundation) and co-author of the report says, “Interest and excitement are key elements in the psychological contract between employers and employees.

If employees don’t feel their role is exciting this will be reflected in their lack of commitment, underperformance and satisfaction.”

Marks advises employers to create a balance between the challenges of the job and the individual’s abilities to ensure that staff flourish in their roles.

According to the report managing appropriate stress levels depends on support from supervisors, relationships with colleagues, status of the role and a sense of identity with the organisation.

While creating an interesting and exciting job involves establishing job variety and clarity as well as physical security.

Mike Emmott, CIPD Employee Relations Adviser says that the findings point the finger to employers, who he says need to work harder to get the most from their staff.

Employee Well-being and the Psychological Contract, a report that forms the basis of the latest CIPD findings also concludes that:

  • 42% of respondents said they have little control at work and 20% indicated limited control.

  • 21% of respondents said their jobs were either very or extremely stressful.

  • 26% of respondents said they received little or no support from their supervisor.

  • 37% of respondents say their workload is too heavy and 20% do not believe the demands of their job are realistic.

  • Only 38% of all employees are willing to place a lot of trust in senior management to look after their interests (this falls to 25% for private sector employees).

  • Graduates report lower levels of satisfaction and commitment, despite often occupying senior positions.


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