A national survey to measure the quality and quantity of working conditions, has been proposed by the government to take place as early as the start of next year, The Guardian has reported. This is amid growing concerns that the social and economic benefits of record high levels of employment are being undermined by poor quality and insecure jobs. The proposal comes after months of discussions between unions and ministers to start measuring job quality.
While the employment rate is at the highest since comparable records began in 1971, at 75.6%, the figure does not account for issues such as pay rates, whether workers feel they are trapped in a job below their skill level, are working too few or too many hours or are under excessive pressure. Labour has responded to record employment rates by claiming they have been achieved by growth in poor-quality jobs with limited prospects and few protections.
In response to these claims the Conservative government has released the proposal of this survey to question how well employees feel supported by their immediate boss and how well they get on with colleagues, and whether they have experienced anxiety or depression caused by work in the past year.
A 2011 survey found that despite 96% of managers considering their relationship with workers very good, only 64% of employees felt the same, and almost a third of employees considered bosses poor or very poor at allowing workers or their representatives to affect decisions.
The hopes of this report are to ensure that workers’ rights are being performed within workplaces and new reforms will benefit, in the long run, businesses and help keep employment rates high.