UK bucks global trend for wellbeing dip

Employee owners are the happiest workers in the UK, according to research by global workplace provider Regus.

Its annual Work-life balance report, which is based on a poll of 26,000 professionals across the globe, reveals a worldwide dip in wellbeing over the last year, but the UK bucks this trend, up five points on the Work-Life Balance Index, from 104 to 109.

UK workers are more content than their French and German counterparts (100 and 101 respectively), but less so than Americans (117).

The satisfaction gap between the UK’s younger and older workforce is one of the most pronounced. Generations X and Y (born after 1964) report that they enjoy work a third more than Baby Boomers and also believe they achieve more than in previous years, 77% compared to 63%.

The research also found:

  • The global average on the Regus Work-Life Balance Index is 120.
  • Employees in organisations with up to 49 employees scored 112.
  • Employees in consultancy and service-based industries have the highest index score at 116.
  • 60% of employees enjoy work more than last year.
  • 54% of Baby Boomers enjoy work more now than in previous years, compared to 71% of younger workers.

John Spencer, UK chief executive officer at Regus, said: “Employers must recognise the importance of work-life balance not only for their own health and that of their staff but for the organisation as a whole.

“Happy workers are both more productive and less likely to leave. As the jobs market improves, organisations that actively promote work-life balance will be more successful in retaining their talent.

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Flexible-working policies play a vital role in improving work-life balance, such as offering staff a choice in where and when they work.

“Many innovative employers and entrepreneurs are already doing this. We see our network of business centres used every day by people working flexibly, closer to home. The value that the younger generation in particular place on flexible working should not be underestimated.”