Fair pay, flexible hours and job security define a good job, a survey of 5,000 UK workers has found.
Indeed’s Better Work Report 2023 examined people’s attitudes towards employment and the differences across demographics, finding age and confidence are the greatest barriers to finding more satisfying jobs.
The research revealed that among all age groups, nearly two in five (39%) of respondents highlighted fair wages as a key factor defining a good job, followed by flexible working and job security, cited by 36% and 31% respectively.
According to the global hiring platform’s survey, those aged 55 and over are most likely to believe fair pay and job security are important, identified by 44% and 39% respectively.
The study further found that nearly two in three (65%) would take a pay cut of around 9% for better work. Although all age groups claim these factors are essential, people’s willingness to take a salary reduction lessened with age. While four in five (80%) generation Z (16-24 years old) employees would take a pay cut, fewer than three in five (58%) over 55s would do the same.
Danny Stacy, UK head of talent intelligence at Indeed, said: “While the definition of good work is deeply subjective, our research reveals a number of must-haves the average UK worker seeks when looking for a better job. Unsurprisingly, receiving fair pay strongly resonates with workers, many of whom are only now beginning to experience real wage growth. The continued desire for flexibility also points to the growing expectation that employers design jobs that allow better work-life balance.”
In terms of job satisfaction, generation X (45- to 55-year-olds) were found to be least satisfied, with 16% thinking their job isn’t good and one in three (34%) of this age group believing there’s a lack of development opportunities for them.
Those aged 51-year-old are the least satisfied overally, with a quarter (25%) claiming not to have a good job.
By comparison, millennials aged 25-44 years old are the most satisfied, with just 8% thinking they don’t have a good job.
In total, 11% of those surveyed do not believe they have a good job, with the main reason being unfair pay, cited by 41%. This was followed by a lack of support and empathy from management (37%) and lack of development opportunities (29%).
The research showed that more female workers identified a lack of support and empathy from their management as key in their job not being good than unfair pay, cited by 42% versus 40% respectively.
Stacy added: “Ultimately, the research underscores that better work means something different to all of us, especially across generations. For employers, these insights point towards ways to attract and retain workers but also create the type of work that benefits people and society.”