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17 Outstanding Job Satisfaction Statistics

by Darko Jacimovic

Having a job and being happy with it are two different things. Over the years, a massive amount of research has been conducted on this topic. Thanks to this, we now have access to all sorts of job satisfaction statistics.

In fact, the focus of all those studies was on the correlation between job satisfaction and job productivity. Of course, we all have our own perception of satisfaction and how it should look like. Even so, the use of certain criteria can allow us to collect relevant and useful information on the situation in an average workplace.

When it comes to the United States, the use of relevant statistics is a great way to see how many people are happy with their jobs. Consequently, employers could use the data to assess the situation in their organization. After that, they could improve the areas that are not contributing to a productive work environment. 

All in all, the statistical approach can provide all interested parties with important insights into the mindset of an average worker in America.

Facts and Stats About Job Satisfaction in the United States (Editor's Pick)

  • 51% of American workers feel satisfied with their current job
  • 32% of workers said that they are engaged in their jobs
  • 21% are willing to change careers at this instant
  • 89% of employers feel that workers quit because they want a bigger salary
  • 27% of employees in America feel that they are not paid enough for the work they put in.

Job Satisfaction In the US

job satisfaction statistics - stats

1. 51% of US workers are satisfied with their current jobs.

According to government research conducted on more than 1,500 employees, 51% of workers are feeling satisfied with their jobs. In fact, it seems that overall job satisfaction is on the rise, and the upward climb has been running for the seventh straight year. With the increase in job security and especially the wages, the situation looks optimistic for the economy, as job satisfaction statistics confirm themselves. 

However, it is clear that around half of the working population is not satisfied with their job, which leaves a lot of room for improvement. 

2. Only 9% of workers have scored top marks on the Workplace Happiness Index.

In a study conducted on 8,664 employees in the US, it was discovered that only 9% of workers are actually happy with their current position. In other words, only a handful of employees in the United States is going to work with a smile on their face. 

The criteria for measuring US job satisfaction statistics in 2018 were opportunity, autonomy, meaning, pay, and contribution.

3. 27% of employees in America feel that they are not paid enough for the work they put in.

The correlation between job satisfaction and the appropriate payment is obvious and logical. Thus, one of the primary reasons for workers’ potential dissatisfaction is low salary. In fact, according to these labor statistics in the US, about 27% of workers have state that they are not well paid.

Needless to say, job satisfaction statistics by profession may vary. In other words, workers in different professions may have differing opinions about their salary. 

4. 58% of workers with a household income of at least $75,000 report being satisfied with their pay.

Speaking of salary, workers whose household income per year amounts to at least $75,000 are satisfied with their paycheck. In a way, this tells us a lot about their overall feelings about the job they do. To clarify, this number is derived from the Conference Board job satisfaction report. 

Also, Americans are feeling confident that their salaries will rise in the future. Once again, the connection between paycheck and job satisfaction comes to light. 

5. According to 61% of workers, trust between themselves and the management plays a big role in job satisfaction.

As we all know, relationships between employees and their senior managers are not always a walk in the park. Yet, 33% of workers in the US said that they are very satisfied with the relationship with their managers.

So to improve upon workplace statistics in 2018 and beyond, people in charge will have to work on building a better relationship between themselves and the employees. For instance, 61% of employees agree that trust is a major factor in developing a healthy working atmosphere. Without trust and mutual understanding, members of a certain organization can not be at their best. Needless to say, this affects the workflow and the subsequent profits of the company in question. 

Employee Retention Statistics in 2018

job satisfaction statistics - workspace

6. 23% of workers would stay at their jobs if managers would provide a better explanation of their duties.

When it comes to working in HR, there is more than meets the eye with this position. All sorts of factors can influence the atmosphere within a collective. Yet, the nuances of successful man management are of the utmost importance when it comes to employee retention stats

For example, 23% of employees said that they would probably stay at their current job if senior managers would ‘up their game.’ To clarify, more than a quarter of the working population would feel better if the managers would provide them with a clear set of instructions. 

In short, people like to know what is expected of them when they clock in.

7. Half of the working population would leave their job because of a bad manager.

According to a recent study by Udemy, 50% of workers would quit their job because of a bad manager. So one of the main reasons for changing a company comes from having bad relations with senior managers and executives. Despite this fact, US workers report the highest job satisfaction since 2005.

8. 60% of managers need more managerial training.

In a way, better managers should be able to provide better working conditions for their employees. Yet, two-thirds of American workers are not quite happy with the skills of those in charge of their organizations. 

To be more precise, 56% of them believe that their managers are promoted too early. Also, 60% of US workers said that their managers should undergo additional managerial training. In theory, this could boost job satisfaction rates in the US.

9. 79% of US workers would leave their job because of a ”lack of appreciation.”

On the other hand, recognition is also an important factor when it comes to career satisfaction statistics. Judging from the results of an extensive research study, 79% of workers in America would leave a company because of ”lack of appreciation”. So if workers are not feeling valued and recognized for their efforts, they are likely to quit the job. 

Again, managerial skills are at play here. In other words, managers should provide their employees with validation to continue with the hard work.

Job Satisfaction By Career

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10. 89% of managers said that they believe workers are quitting their jobs in search of more money.

Unlike employees who put the blame on incapable managers, their bosses feel that the chase for more money is the reason why people leave their jobs. To be precise, 89% of company owners believe that employees are quitting because they want more cash. 

After all, America is supposed to be the land of opportunity. However, the same study proves that only a handful of workers (12%) is willing to leave a company for more money elsewhere. In short, it seems that not everything is about the money after all. 

11. 21% of employees in America are eager to change careers.

The decision to change a profession is not an easy one. For that reason, many people decide to stay until retirement at a job they hate. Needless to say, this results in a plethora of psychological problems. 

Yet, a recent job satisfaction study has shown that 21% of employees in the US are eager to switch careers. In a way, this survey has shown that a considerable amount of workers are thinking about changing careers. 

Once again, this could be taken as a red flag for the bosses and executives. It is never a good thing to see your best workers go and work for your competitors.

Workplace Statistics for 2018

job satisfaction statistics - workers

12. 55% of the US workers say that they are experiencing signs of job burnout.

By doing a survey of more than 2,000 workers, researchers have discovered that more than half of American workers are showing signs of job burnout. When asked about the possible reasons for such a sentiment, employees listed heavy workload and lack of recognition as the main culprits. In a nutshell, workplace stress seems to be on the rise.

13. Anxiety is the primary sign of job burnout, closely followed by fatigue and depression.

According to the same survey (see the previous stat), anxiety is the main symptom of job burnout. To clarify, 67% of respondents have listed anxiety as the primary reason. But fatigue (66%) is not far behind. Also, the workers who took part in the study said that they also view depression (58%) or even anger (55%) as possible symptoms of job burnout. 

In a way, this presents the darker side of employee satisfaction statistics. As such, all relevant parties should tackle the problem as soon as possible.

14. 31% of employees admit that they are experiencing high levels of stress in their jobs.

A recent survey on employment statistics discovered that as many as 31% of employees report high levels of stress at work. Needless to say, all that accumulated stress in the workplace is one of the main reasons for the rise of unhappy employee statistics.

Of course, the results of this survey are worrying, to say the least. It is well-known that extreme levels of stress can compromise mental health and endanger physical health as well.

15. 61% of workers are making lifestyle changes in agreement with their company’s wellness policy.

Depression, anxiety, and all sorts of aches and pains can have a significant effect on job satisfaction and productivity. For that reason, many companies are implementing so-called wellness programs. 

In a way, these programs are ‘forcing’ workers to take some time away from work. For instance, to go on a vacation on a regular basis. 

It seems that two-thirds of workers (61%) have decided to accept the guidelines. To clarify, they are making healthier choices in their lifestyle thanks to those wellness programs.

Employee Engagement Statistics for 2018

job satisfaction statistics - woman

16. As much as a 21% increase in profitability is coming from engaging teams.

Truth be told, people who come to work with passion and energy are the ones who can move a company forward. It goes without saying that every boss and every company owner in the world want their organization to thrive and grow as much as possible. 

According to Gallup job satisfaction statistics for 2018, engaged teams can lead to a 21% increase in profitability. The same research has shown that engaged employees have a 41% decrease in absenteeism. 

In a nutshell, employees who feel good at their job are more likely to show up for work in the first place. 

17. Employee engagement statistics indicate that only 32% of employees are engaged in their current jobs.

When it comes to employee satisfaction statistics in the US, it is important to note that many workers are not actively engaged in what they do. As a matter of fact, a third of the working population (32%) have said that they are engaged in their jobs. 

It goes without saying that such an attitude has a massive impact on productivity. Also, 33% of workers feel as if they have reached a dead-end in their career.

What is Job Satisfaction?

job satisfaction statistics - remote

To be fair, the term job satisfaction is a bit elusive because every person can have a different perspective on the subject. Yet, most people would agree with the definition that job satisfaction equals to a feeling of contentment. Moreover, a sense of accomplishment is also closely related to the term ‘job satisfaction.’

As we said at the beginning of this job satisfaction statistics report, it’s all about whether a person likes or dislikes her job. The consequences of one’s attitude towards the work and the organization can make or break a company. Therefore, it is important to have a clear picture of the situation and affairs within the company. By staying informed, managers can work on providing their employees with a pleasant working environment.

Job satisfaction in the US is still not on a level we all want it to be. As we could see from the stats we mentioned, around half of the employees are satisfied with their job. 

In conclusion, there is a lot of room for improvement. But the overall economic growth should result in more job opportunities. New job openings will create a stronger economy. As a consequence, we can expect some optimistic job satisfaction news in the upcoming period.

Then again, it is important to remember that job satisfaction is a subjective and personal matter. In other words, statistical data may send a wrong picture. As long as there are jobs, there will be people who complain. So the best course of action is that we all do our best in our day-to-day activities. By doing so, the numbers for job satisfaction statistics will take a much brighter tone.



  1. USA Today
  2. CNBC
  3. Business Report
  4. SHRM
  5. Tiny Pulse
  6. Udemy
  7. O. C. Tanner
  8. Forbes
  9. Career Vision
  10. TechRepublic
  11. Career Builder
  12. Gallup

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