Are Malaysians happy at work despite long working hours, and how do we compare with other countries in Asia?
According to the Asia Pacific Employee Pulse Study, Malaysians recorded the highest level of job satisfaction compared with employees in Singapore and Hong Kong.
About 67% of Malaysians are believed to be happy with their jobs compared with Singaporeans (64%) and Hong Kong (50%).
However, the same study also showed that when it comes to “looking forward to going to work”, the numbers were below 50%.
Only 45% of Malaysians answered in the positive, compared with Singapore (43%) and Hong Kong (34%).
An interesting trend in the survey by Qualtrics, showed that employees in the travel and leisure, retail, and utilities, seem to be among the most motivated to go to work.
They look forward to going to work “most of the time”, if not always, with travel and leisure recording 60%, retail (64%) and utilities (100%), all far higher than the national average.
Another aspect of the survey dealt with attrition, due to long working hours.
Despite having to work long hours, most Malaysian employees did not believe it was reason enough to leave their jobs.
“Contrary to popular beliefs, long working hours did not necessarily contribute to high employee turnover rates in Malaysia,” the survey said.
Breaking this down by sector, the survey found that those employed in the finance sector were least likely to leave their jobs despite the long hours they put in, with only 11% expressing such a desire.
This compares with media and advertising employees, 25% of whom would want out over having to work long hours. Half of the respondents in this sector said they worked more than 45 hours a week.
Meawhile, Qualtrics Southeast Asia head Foo Mao Gen said in the report by the company, that many employers tend to misread how their workers feel.
“It is not uncommon to assume that longer working hours and high stress levels would naturally lead to a disgruntled and dissatisfied workforce, however, it has been pleasantly surprising to have this fact refuted,” he said.
Qualtrics runs its Employee Pulse study every quarter focusing on the key factors driving employee attitudes, behaviours, and well-being.
It canvasses the views of 5,000 fulltime employees around the world and experiments with fresh ways to measure engagement, looking beyond typical drivers to understand what companies should do to build more enjoyable, productive, and attractive places to work.