Singaporeans less happy with employers than global average: Poll

The poll showed 73 per cent of Singaporeans are satisfied with the firms they work for, compared with the global average of 82 per cent.
The poll showed 73 per cent of Singaporeans are satisfied with the firms they work for, compared with the global average of 82 per cent.PHOTO: ST FILE

Singapore employees are less satisfied with their companies than workers in other countries, according to a survey out yesterday.

It found that employee engagement here has declined consistently over the past three years, in stark contrast to the upward trend observed across the globe.

The poll showed 73 per cent of Singaporeans are satisfied with the firms they work for, compared with the global average of 82 per cent.

In addition, Singaporeans are less likely to endorse their organisations as good employers - 76 per cent of employees in the Asia-Pacific region would advocate for their companies as good places to work, while only 68 per cent of Singapore employees are willing to do so.

"Improving employee engagement continues to represent a significant opportunity - not just for businesses, but also for the economy as a whole. This is widely acknowledged," said Mr Kulshaan Singh, the Singapore chief executive of human resource consulting firm Mercer, which conducted the survey.

"The decline is primarily due to the lower feelings of pride in and satisfaction with organisations, and our analysis shows that such views are largely driven by the employees' concerns about innovation and career development."

 

The survey polled more than 42,000 employees in Singapore, representing various industries and jobs from global and local multinationals. It assessed employee engagement by measuring the level of pride, motivation and commitment employees have towards the organisations they work for.

POOR EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT

If performance and productivity are a combination of individual talent and engagement, the best way to optimise talent is to ensure it is engaged. Although this seems obvious, many organisations still struggle to build the work environment they need to fully realise engagement in the workplace.

MR KULSHAAN SINGH, the Singapore chief executive of human resource consulting firm Mercer, which conducted the survey.

Mercer said an increasing number of employees here say they are not getting the right opportunities to learn and grow, while 20 per cent believe they are not receiving the necessary feedback from their immediate managers to improve themselves.

Even more worrying is that one in three feels that personal career goals are difficult to meet in their firms, while 95 per cent want to be recognised and rewarded for a wider range of contributions.

Although 85 per cent of employees said they were proud of the products and services they offer, 30 per cent feel their organisations are not continually improving these products and services.

Notably, one out of every three employees feels that the company does not support the development of new ideas.

Still, attitudes towards employee involvement are notably more positive in Singapore, with 70 per cent of staff feeling that they are sufficiently involved in the decision- making process on matters that may affect them. This compares with 67 per cent globally.

Immediate managers play a critical role in this perception, with 80 per cent of employees saying their immediate managers notify them of important information related to their work.

"Engagement represents the best opportunity for Singapore to optimise the human capital it has," said Mr Singh.

"If performance and productivity are a combination of individual talent and engagement, the best way to optimise talent is to ensure it is engaged. Although this seems obvious, many organisations still struggle to build the work environment they need to fully realise engagement in the workplace."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on , with the headline 'S'poreans less happy with employers than global average: Poll'. Print Edition | Subscribe