Employers need 'good job' guidance
20 November 2009
Employers are committed to improving the quality of jobs in the UK but lack guidance about how to do so, according to a new report by The Work Foundation.
The report shows that growing numbers of employers are seeing decent quality jobs and commercial or organisational success as mutually supporting goals.
Employers understood a 'good job' to involve: being valued and appreciated, interest and fulfilment, job satisfaction, autonomy, decent working conditions, morale and teamwork, effective management, and staff development
Poor quality jobs were seen to be responsible for many persistent workforce issues including sickness absence, low staff retention, poor motivation levels and difficulties hiring the right people.
Stephen Bevan, managing director of The Work Foundation said: "Employers grasp the link between staff wellbeing and how it can affect productivity. What is missing is how to deliver this.
"As organisations prepare for recovery after the recession, the need for the government to take a lead in supporting employers to tackle the root causes of lost productivity and ill-health will become more and more acute. But the responsibility for health and wellbeing of the workforce is spread across different government departments.
"We need one centralised body with a clear identity and a clear remit to work in partnership with employers to crack many of the UK's persistent job quality problems."
The report calls for the government to take the lead in helping employers do more to improve job quality. In addition, it says government should champion better working conditions; promote best practice; carry out further research; publish case studies and incentivise employers to experiment with new approaches to good jobs.
The HSE commissioned the study, which reflects its commitment to broadening the scope of health and safety in the workplace to encompass mental health and general wellbeing.