IT Job Satisfaction Hits 10-Year Low
from the survey-says dept
The Corporate Executive Board released the results of its job satisfaction survey for 2009 which included about 10,000 responses from IT workers. According to 2007 figures, 12% of surveyed IT workers said they were “highly engaged” and willing to put in extra effort for their jobs — a number that has dropped to about 4% in mid-2009. According to the CEB, this is the lowest level since it started doing the survey a decade ago. The survey’s conclusion has made it into some headlines, where the stories predict that when the economy recovers, these unsatisfied IT workers will begin to change careers — or at least change their employers.
There are lots of possible explanations for this drop in IT job satisfaction, and it seems that many anecdotal stories point to the lack of expected rewards for putting in extra hours. A mid-2009 survey reflects the mood of employees who have seen co-workers retrenched and employees who see their workloads increasing but no sight of increased wages in the near future. Add to that, plenty of IT workers complain about being treated poorly and taken for granted. However, declining job satisfaction has been on the radar for years — so these survey results should not be an enormous surprise. The questions to be answered should be how to tell if this is really a problem, and if so, what are the possible solutions.
On the horizon, there are forecasts of increased IT hiring in 2010 which may help relieve some of the stresses that the recession has brought upon IT industry workers. But as the economy recovers, should IT workers aim to work for themselves as contract freelancers to increase their job satisfaction? (You can’t complain about the boss if you’re self-employed.) Will job satisfaction simply bounce back in proportion to the health of the economy? Will large corporations be forced to change their management policies in order to retain employees? Will unions for IT workers form? If you can read the tea leaves, let us know what you think in the comments.