How do employees in the UK view their work?

Nik Penhale Smith

Looking back at 2013, the UK’s year was full of numerous stories that gained international attention. As a nation, the UK said goodbye to several prominent figures as Margaret Thatcher passed away 1, Sir Alex Ferguson (finally) retired as manager of Manchester United 2 and, the iconic tax disk will, unfortunately no longer be a main stay in car windows 3. In contrast to this, the UK also enjoyed happier news as they welcomed a new heir to the world 4, and celebrated the 50th anniversary of everybody’s favourite Doctor (Who) 5.

In economic news, 2013 is forecast to be a positive year for the UK. The European Commission forecasts that the UK will show a significant increase in GDP, and, will show a slight decrease in unemployment rate 6. Although these statistics paint a relatively positive picture of the UK, they say very little about how individual people felt about their work in 2013.

So in a year of goodbyes and celebrations, how did employees in the UK feel about their work in comparison to their European colleagues?

Some of the preliminary findings on how employees in the UK viewed their work, workload and working conditions can be found below. If you are interested in further insights please sign up for our forthcoming report, where in addition to further insights, you will also be able to see levels of employee engagement and employee commitment for 52 different countries.

Global Employee Engagement Index™

The Global Employee Engagement Index™ is a global employee survey conducted by Effectory International that surveys the work-related opinions of employees in 52 different countries. Respondents are asked more than 100 questions each in order for Effectory International to gain a detailed insight into global work-opinions. From the data collected, Effectory International also creates a benchmarking tool that compares 52 different countries on 17 key HR variables (including employee engagement).

» Learn how the Global Employee Engagement Index can benefit your organisation


  • Results from our survey show that a significant number of employees in the UK responded negatively to questions relating to the enjoyment and meaning of their work.
  • In comparison with their European counterparts, employees in the UK enjoyed taking on new challenges.


  • Our research shows that there is a high variance in how employees felt about their workload and, in how people felt about their fitness and health.
  • Employees in the UK indicated that they were more than able to manage their own time and could emotionally handle their work.

Working conditions:

  • UK employees responded very positively to how safe they felt whilst carrying out their work, and to how clearly health and safety regulations were communicated.
  • Results show a high a variance in how people felt in terms of their ability to concentrate at work, and how satisfied people were with their working hours.
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Interested in more insights, and in seeing how engaged and committed employees in your country are? Click here for your free copy of the report.

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6 European Commission Autumn forecast 2013.

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