One in five adults unhappy in their job. Could remote working technology help?

  • The UK workforce thinks ‘doing meaningful work’ is the key to office happiness followed by the ability to work remotely.
  • Given the choice, most would eliminate conference calls, emails – and their manager.
  • Two fifths said that they don’t like socializing with colleagues or only attend socials because they feel obligated.
  • However, 25 percent of Millennials report being “elated” with their jobs, which is 150% higher than the next most-elated group (Baby Boomers at 10%).
  • 84 percent of “elated” workers report “very good” or “good” relationships with their managers. Meanwhile, 67 percent of “miserable” workers said their relationship is “acceptable” at best.

Nearly a fifth (19 percent) of UK adults are unhappy in their job according to a study from collaborative work management (CWM) platform Wrike. 

Wrike’s Happiness Index polled 4,000 workers in the US, UK, Germany, and France. The research found that while there is a growing trend for remote working, it is not currently an option for many UK workers.

UK respondents ranked ‘the ability to work remotely’ as their second most important work driver – narrowly behind the importance of ‘doing meaningful work’ – but a quarter said that their company does not offer the option of working remotely. Over half (56 percent) of the happiest workforce, Americans, said their company’s mission and vision strongly resonates with them, by comparison to just over a third (36 percent) of UK respondents.

“A happy workforce is a productive workforce and it is unacceptable that nearly a fifth of UK employees are unhappy with their job,” said Patricia DuChene, GM EMEA, Wrike. “Executives need to pay closer attention to the most important factors that foster a healthy company culture and one that supports life-work balance, especially in areas that are well within leadership’s control.

“Adopting new technologies, like Wrike, can play key role in workplace happiness because they make collaboration seamless, regardless of an employee’s location. These technologies help employees better understand the value of their work by connecting individual tasks and projects to greater company-wide objectives and overarching mission.”

The survey also found that nearly two-fifths (39 percent) of UK employees do not like socializing with colleagues and only attend work-sponsored social events because they feel obligated. This extends through to their lunch breaks where a quarter admit to eating at their desk and 15 percent are on social media. Only 23 percent take 30 minutes to eat with their colleagues, compared to 39 percent of French workers, and 36 percent of German workers.

“We spend so many hours of our lives at work that it is critical companies make the office a place where employees want to be – and not an environment where they feel pressured to do things that may make them uncomfortable. A welcoming company culture coupled with a strong vision and mission give people something to rally around and a reason to want to be there – physically or virtually – everyday,” added DuChene.

Other survey highlights from UK respondents include:

  • Over half (54 percent) of describe diversity in their workplace as average
  • Only a third (29 percent) rate their relationship with their manager as very good
  • Most (59 percent) swear in the workplace
  • The full UK results for the Culture section of the report are available here: .
Chris Price