What do employees think of their line managers?

  8th June 2010      
 Company News, Recruitment

Below is a summary of the findings obtained a quarterly survey report, published in the spring of 2010 by the Charted Institute of Personal Development (CIPD), focussing on several aspects concerning employees and their views towards their line managers.

Job Satisfaction
There has been a 1% increase in overall job satisfaction compared to the previous quarter, along with a significant decrease last spring, although the overall results stay low (+36).

As seen in past quarterly reports, men (+36) continue to report a lower rate on job satisfaction compared to women (+38).
Those aged between 18-24 report themselves as being the most dissatisfied with their jobs (+7), while older people (55 years or over) report themselves as being the most satisfied.

In sum, employees who work for charities or in the voluntary sector appear to be the most satisfied (+44), however, this net score has decreased by 11 points after the previous quarter.  Those in the private sector (+36) have reported being the more satisfied compared to employees in the public sector (+34) for the very first time.

Attitudes towards role
The majority of employees either agreed (47%) or strongly agreed (25%) that their work is worthwhile. This is not dissimilar from the results gained last year and show that the fall in job satisfaction has not created a pessimistic view on how worthwhile employee’s jobs are.

The reports this spring indicate that more people strongly agree (25%) with the statement, they get excited when they perform their job well. With the effects of the recent economic crisis, it may have given employees a platform to show their employers how good at their jobs they really are.

Employestudye attitude towards management
Most employees give positive attitudes towards their direct line managers. The results are very like those obtained last quarter, although scores have fallen since April last year.  68% of Employees reported that their line managers usually/ always treat them fairly, with 68% also stating that they are committed to their company. 47% of employees reported their manager rarely/never coaches them at work, with 39% stating that their manager discusses their training and development requirements, and an even fewer amount (28%) reporting that their manager gives them feedback on their performance.

Employee perceptions of senior managers
On the whole, employees seem to be less positive with their views towards senior managers. A lot of items indicate a drop since the last quarter with all items revealing a drop since last spring. Scores on the measure for trust in the senior managers was the lowest it’s ever been (-5) and negative views concerning consultation is still a disturbing matter (-27).

Views of leadership seem to be worse in the public sector; every item has a negative net score on satisfaction which has deteriorated over the last quarter.

Communication, consultation and employee advocacy
Only 50% feel that they are fairly or fully informed about what is going on in their company. This has got slightly worse since the spring of last year. Those from the voluntary/charity industry are the most likely to state feeling fairly or fully informed (58%), in contrast to the private and public sectors (49%).

Workload bookand work pressures
There has been an increase of employees who state that they are under extreme pressure at work on either a daily or twice weekly basis (44%). This was 41% in the quarter prior and 38% last year.

Those who have stated being under extreme pressure on a daily basis as gradually increased over the past year to 17%, in comparison to the previous quarter (14%) and 12% 12 months ago.

33% of employees reported that their workload was too much vs. The results from the previous quarter (29%). 56% of employees stated that their work load was about right with 10% reporting that there wasn’t enough.

Work-life balance
57% of employees say that they are satisfied they get the right balance between work and their home life, which is a very small drop from last quarter (59%) and nearly the same as last year’s figure of 56%.

Females are slightly more likely to be satisfied with their balance of work and home life (61%) compared to men (54%). Those aged 55 or over are significantly more likely to feel satisfied that they obtain the right balance (69%) compared to any other age group.

Those in the private sector are more probable to find they are satisfied with their work and home life balance (58%) compared to the voluntary sector (56%) or the private sector (52%).

Employee attitudes and the recession
Overall, 19% of respondents thought it would be likely or very likely that they could lose their job as a consequence of the economic climate, which has stayed the same as the last quarter and a small rise compared to the 18% reported last year.

Those who are employed in the private sector are slightly less negative about the possibility of losing their jobs due to the economic climate compared to a year ago, with two in ten people thought it was likely or very likely (20%) vs. 23% last year. Respondents in the public sector reported feeling that they are likely or very likely that they will lose their job have increased to 18%, from just 7% 12 months ago.

Respondents are slightly less positive about the probability of finding alternative employment compared to this time a year ago. Only 11% of employees think that it would be easy or very easy to find a new job, with 63% thinking it would be difficult or very difficult. To compare, the results a year ago revealed that 12% of respondents thought it would be easy or very easy to find alternative employment, with 61% thinking it would be difficult or very difficult.

An increasing number of respondents have reported that their company has made redundancies (34%) compared to 30% in the last quarter and an even smaller amount a year ago.

Almost 4 in ten employees (39%) in the public sector have reported that their company is planning to make staff cuts, in contrast to only 9% in the private sector. To compare, 12 months ago saw 17% of private sector employees reporting that their employers were planning staff cuts, with only 14% in the public sector.

Bullying and harassment in the workplace

The reports of bulling or harassment has in the last two years, stayed pretty much the same at 15%, in contrast with a year ago.

Almost three in ten employees stated that they saw colleagues being bullied within the past 2 years; 4% saw colleagues being sexually harassed and a further 3% witnessing racial harassment. Overall, 4% of respondents stated seeing individuals at work subjected to violence. This was higher for respondents in the public sector, who are more likely to witness any of these episodes, compared to those in the voluntary sector.

More than one quarter of respondents (27%) are actively seeking a new job. This has risen from the last quarter (22%) and 25% reported last spring. Those who are more likely to be looking for a new job this quarter are those in the voluntary sector (29%) in comparison to 27% of private sector and 24% public sector respondents.

Just over 4 in 10 (41%) of respondents reported being likely to change jobs within the next 12 months. This demonstrates a small rise from the last quarter (37%) and in comparison to last spring (also 37%). Although those in the public sector are less likely to seek a new job presently, the same group would most like to change their jobs within the next 12 months (46%).

To view the full report, please go to

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