Millions of UK workers would not describe themselves as happy at work, as many feel their employee benefits do not recognise their hard work.
In a survey of close to 1,200 employees, Perkbox found that 30% of respondents are not happy at work. When extrapolated to represent the whole UK workforce, this results in around 6.5million unhappy workers.
The power of ‘thank you’ appears to be overlooked by employers, as over two thirds of UK workers (69%) rate company perks and benefits as important to their overall satisfaction. Some 26% said a lack of reward for their good work was their number one grievance at work.
Despite this, the survey found that 53% of businesses do not formally recognise outstanding employee performance on a regular basis, while 44% of respondents believe that recognition is relevant or extremely relevant to business performance.
Providing better rewards could be the key to retaining young talent, as the majority of 18 to 24 year olds (84%) and 25 to 34 year olds (78%) say they would be more likely to stay with their current employer, demonstrating that millennials value more than financial remuneration.
Saruv Chopra, CEO and co-founder of Perkbox said: “This research indicates the scale of unhappiness in workers within UK businesses, and goes some way into revealing some of the causes of the nation’s general productivity issues.
“A single disengaged worker, irrespective of sector, can cost a business over £3K annually in sick leave, lost productivity, training and recruitment. This cost spirals into six figures if the organisation employs over a 1,000 people.”
UK workers also cited negative culture at work as one of their main grievances, as 21% said that a toxic atmosphere at work was a hindrance to happiness. Being micro managed (17%) and working long hours were also factors (15%).
One in five said their boss would be moderately or not at all supportive if they told them they were unhappy. Some 16% suggested they had either a ‘poor’ or ‘terrible’ boss, compared to 15% that felt their boss is ‘fantastic’.
Chopra added: “Most research already in the public domain indicates that while remuneration might instantly gratify and sway potential employees into accepting a job offer, it’s the non-financial factors that come with reward and recognition that engages and retains workers in the long run. Satisfied workers yield dividends in terms of engagement loyalty and morale. Quite simply, happy teams accomplish great things.”