A survey of 1,360 Indian employees working in different organisations across sectors and locations showed that 59% are unhappy at work.
The survey, which featured 774 men and 586 women, was conducted by happyness.me — “a global community of domain experts” offering insights in enchancing work cultures. It showed workplace happiness to be a combination of workplace-specific factors and psychological factors.
Greater autonomy and a sense of belongingness at work contributed to higher happiness levels. On the other hand, high stress and poor work-life balance contributed to lower levels of workplace happiness.
The results indicate that 45% of men were happy at work, compared to 37% women.
The survey also revealed a sharp difference in happiness levels between full-time and part-time employees. While 44% of full-time employees said they were happy at work, the corresponding number for part-time employees was just 25%. A higher proportion of full-time employees also expressed a sense of belongingness with their co-workers than part-time employees.
The Covid-19 pandemic led to a surge in work-from-home arrangements across companies and sectors over the last two years. Only 41% of those surveyed said they preferred working from office all the time. On the other hand, 59% preferred hybrid work arrangements.
“The need to seek happiness at work is becoming increasingly important,” the survey report said. “Yet, the majority of the employees are experiencing low levels of happiness at work. So, there is a strong urge to prioritise happiness but it is not met with a satisfactory level of the same. This unquenched thirst for a higher level of workplace happiness, hence, permeates into several other aspects of employees’ work life.”
According to the report, the psychological factors affecting workplace happiness were found to be belongingness, autonomy, a sense of meaning and purpose, and self-management. The workplace factors were innovation, intention to continue or quit, and work-life balance.
According to the survey, the “protection of the psychological needs for self” became of paramount importance for workplace happiness—even outranking pay—during the pandemic.
While happiness at work was low in most of the 18 sectors surveyed, it was highest in the healthcare and pharmaceuticals sector at 51%, and lowest in the retail and e-commerce sector at 25%.
Among men, the sector that provided the most workplace happiness was automobile at 56%, while for women it was the healthcare and pharmaceuticals sector at 53%.
On the other hand, just 27% of male employees in the fintech sector said they were happy at work. The percentage of women who expressed work happiness in the retail and e-commerce sector was an abysmally low 11%.