Job satisfaction


Job satisfaction can be defined as a collection of feelings that an individual holds toward his or her job. This definition is clearly a very broad one. Yet this is inherent in the concept. A person’s job is more than just the obvious activities of shuffling papers, writing programs code, waiting on customers, or driving a truck. Jobs require interaction with coworkers and bosses, following organizational rules and policies, meeting performance standards, living with working conditions that are often less than ideal. This means that an employee’s assessment of how satisfied or dissatisfied he or she is with his or her job is a complex summation of a number of discrete job elements.

The extent of job satisfaction should be known to the management at specified regular intervals. The two main widely used approaches are a single global rating and a summation score made up of a number of job facets. The single global rating method is nothing more than asking individuals to respond to one question such as� All things considered, how satisfied are you with your job?� Respondents then reply by circling a number from one to five that corresponds to answers from “highly satisfied� to “highly dissatisfied�.

The other approach is a summation of job facets is more sophisticated. It identifies key elements in a job and asks for the employee’s feeling about each. Typical factors that would be included are the nature of the work, supervision, present pay, promotion opportunities, and relations with coworkers. These factors are rated on a standardized scale and then added up to create an overall job satisfaction score.

Is one of the foregoing approaches superior to the other? Intuitively, it would seem that summing up responses to a number of job factors would achieve a more accurate evaluation of job satisfaction . The research, however, doesn’t support this intuition. This is one of those rare instances in which simplicity seems to work as well as complexity. Comparisons of one-question global ratings with the more lengthy summation –of-job-factors method indicate that the former is essentially as valid as the latter. The best explanation for this outcome is that the concept of job satisfaction is inherently so broad that the single question captures its essences.

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