Contractors and other self-employed people are happier than employees
According to the findings of a new survey, 48% of permanent employees are often not happy at work, and almost 20% are ‘rarely or never’ happy at work. Meanwhile, a huge 76% of self-employed people stated that they were enthusiastic about the work they do – making it clear that contractors, freelancer and other self-employed people are happier with their career choices than employees.
The Happy HaPI Survey
This survey was conducted by Personal Group, which provides employee services within the UK, and is what’s known – rather appropriately – as a ‘HaPI’ survey, which stands for Health and Psychosocial Instruments. Almost 800 UK workers were interviewed, and the findings were then benchmarked against a database of more than 40,000 other survey results – gathered from organisations which treat ‘employee engagement’ as a top priority.
The aim was to discover how happy, or unhappy, people are in the workplace, and to find out what might make them happier – although clearly becoming self-employed is one answer. Beyond this, it also looked at productivity levels and aimed to determine how happiness levels relate to productivity – in light of additional research by the University of Warwick, which found that happy workers are around 12% more productive.
Age makes a huge difference
Younger employees were least enthusiastic about coming to work, vs older employees in more senior roles. The same variation was also identified in relation to overall happiness in the workplace. Something which may explain the increasing number of younger people who are choosing to set up as limited company contractors, as identified by our Contractor Attitude Surveys.
Commenting on the findings of the report, Personal Group Chief Executive Mark Scanlon said, “There is growing evidence of the connection that happy and engaged employees are more productive. This could explain why those who are self-employed seem to be happiest and why the UK entrepreneurial and start-up scene is so successful – these people unsurprisingly tend to feel more invested in the business outcome.”