Top Industries for Employee Satisfaction (Study)

Jul 13, 2023 | Digital Signage

Alistair Cousins

Alistair Cousins

Today’s businesses face fierce competition. It’s getting increasingly difficult for companies to set themselves apart from the crowd, and with new businesses being launched every day, attracting and retaining talent has never been so important.

Some industries are known for the incredible opportunities that they offer, but other sectors remain shrouded in mystery when it comes to employee satisfaction. So, our team at TrouDigital decided to look into how this varies across some of today’s top industries, to reveal which sectors are best for workers – and which are best avoided. 

Employee satisfaction matters now more than ever before. Companies need to attract top talent and keep it if they are to succeed on a global stage, and that’s before we even start to look into the ambitious growth strategies that many of these brands have for the future. As the world of work evolves, the significance of employee satisfaction continues to rise at a rapid pace. 

Businesses, of course, recognise the importance of keeping people happy, with many top companies now doing their utmost to nurture talent and create tempting opportunities within their teams. This research shines a light on the industries that are succeeding here. The study also explores some of the most successful strategies businesses are using to boost engagement and morale – such as digital signage software.

Top Industries for Employee Satisfaction (Study) TrouDigital

Why is employee satisfaction important?

Employee satisfaction is vital to the ongoing success of any brand. It has a huge impact on the productivity of a company, affecting everything from job performance and engagement to motivation. Factors like these determine what a company is capable of, and how customers will ultimately experience the brand. 

If staff members are satisfied at work, the company is likely to have a far more positive work culture. And that means better collaboration, more effective communication and improvements in the sort of teamwork that help employees overcome challenges and turn new ideas into reality. 

Satisfaction levels also have an effect on the company’s ability to attract new staff. If a company is to have any hope of outsmarting its competitors, it needs to be able to attract the most creative, talented and skilled staff available. Once fully trained and on the job, these staff then need to be kept fully satisfied to avoid the risk of them moving on.

Industries with the best employee satisfaction

Using data from Statista and Glassdoor, we have established the UK industries with the highest and lowest employee satisfaction. 

To achieve this, both median yearly pay and Glassdoor average reviews per sector were attributed a score out of 10. From there, an average of each score was then calculated and multiplied by 10, to give an index score with maximum accuracy. Each final result is out of a possible 100.

The top five:

RankIndustryAverage Glassdoor Review FigureReview Score (out of 10)Median Yearly Pay (£) in 2022Yearly Pay Score(out of 10)Final TrouDigital Employee Satisfaction Index Score(out of 100)
#1Assorted energy supply3.971045,7701095
= #2Financial and insurance activities3.93943,710990
= #2Mining and quarrying3.94943,091990
= #2Information and communication4.011042,071890

The data revealed that those working in the ‘assorted energy supply’ sector are the happiest, with the highest index score of 95/100. The average Glassdoor employee reviews in the sector are 3.97/5, amongst the best in the UK. Not only are they amongst the most satisfied, ‘assorted energy supply’ employees earn the highest average figure in the UK, at £45,770.

Three sectors scored 90/100 in the satisfaction index, with industries being ‘financial and insurance activities’, ‘mining and quarrying’, and ‘information and communication’. Those disparate sectors all yield strong average Glassdoor review scores, with ‘information and communication’ coming out on top with 4.01/5. ‘Financial and insurance activities’ may have had the lowest average Glassdoor rating of the three, at 3.93/5, but it offered the highest median yearly pay at £43,710.

In fifth place is the ‘construction’ industry, with a score of 80/100 overall. Whilst the sector ranks second highest in the top five for Glassdoor reviews, with an average score of 4.00, those working in the industry earn an average of just £36,259. This is almost £6,000 less than ‘information and communication’ in joint second, and the lowest figure in the top five.

The bottom five:

RankIndustryAverage Glassdoor Review FigureReview score(out of 10)Median yearly pay (£) in 2022Yearly Pay Score(out of 10)Final TrouDigital Employee Satisfaction Index Score(out of 100)
#16Water supply, sewerage, waste management and remediation activities3.34134,010530
#17Wholesale and retail trade – repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles3.62327,864120
= #18Security and associated service activities3.27128,406215
= #18Arts, entertainment and recreation3.54128,106215
#20Accommodation and food service activities3.59222,9640.513

For all sectors ranked, the data shows that those working in the ‘security and associated service activities’ industry have the lowest average rate of satisfaction with their job, at 3.27/5. Alongside a low rate of median pay, the sector’s overall index score was just 15. Those working in ‘arts, entertainment and recreation’ did have a higher average Glassdoor review score of 3.54/5, but a lower average rate of pay, and so also score 15/100 in the index.

However, it’s ‘accommodation and food service activities’ that is at the bottom of the ranking, with a score of 13/100. Whilst the Glassdoor satisfaction score of 3.59 is better than that of ‘security and associated service activities’, the yearly pay of just under £23,000 is substantially lower than any other industry sector measured. As such, ‘accommodation and food service industries’ yields a pay index score of just 0.5/10.

What can companies do to improve employee satisfaction?

Businesses can take steps to enhance employee satisfaction and create a positive work environment. 

Open communication is vital here, because it allows employees to voice their concerns and contribute to decision-making processes. Take a look at some of the key strategies businesses are using to boost satisfaction levels below. 

How to improve employee satisfaction and drive engagement 

  • Listen: Find out what employees want 
  • Finding out what really matters to employees is one of the best ways to improve overall motivation and engagement in a business. 

    Give employees opportunities to share ideas, whether that’s through internal communication platforms, or a schedule of regular meetings to bring people together. 

    Listen to feedback from employees and take note of the issues that could be impacting satisfaction levels at work.  

  • Communicate: Encourage conversation and openness 
  • Make use of technology such as digital signage and screens to share QR codes of feedback surveys, to enable employees to conveniently access and participate in surveys. This not only demonstrates the fact that the business values their opinions, it also helps to create a sense of ownership through active involvement in decision-making processes.

  • Growth: Allow employees to learn, develop and shape their roles over time 
  • While individuals tend to be hired to fulfil specific roles, over time they can easily start to feel overlooked if there’s limited room for growth and advancement. 

    It’s so important that businesses create opportunities for professional development and growth. This might be through the implementation of training programs and mentorship initiatives, or other clear career advancement paths. 

    By supporting employees to further their training and hone new skills, companies create ways for staff to progress in their careers. This in turn ensures staff feel valued at work, and limits the risk of them looking elsewhere for the next step in their journey.  

  • Flexibility: Promote work-life balance 
  • Flexible work arrangements, such as remote work options or flexi-time, allow staff to look after their personal commitments, in a way that also gives them the time and space they need to get their work done. 

    The promotion of a healthy work-life balance is hugely beneficial when it comes to retaining staff. The provision of flexible work options also results in happier and more satisfied staff, who tend to be far more productive. 

    Top Industries for Employee Satisfaction (Study) TrouDigital

    Use digital signage to boost employee engagement

    Digital signage software is a powerful tool for improving internal communication and boosting employee engagement. Messages can be scheduled and deployed automatically to reach the right people at the right time and maximise their impact. This also saves money on printing costs and lowers the risk of information being buried in emails.  

    Better-connected employees tend to be happier, so communication is vital. Using well-placed screens present a quick and easy way for companies to share news, amplify important information, promote company culture, and even provide training and access to onboarding materials. Doing so creates a more productive and collaborative culture by removing information silos.  

    Ultimately, digital signage empowers businesses to create interactive experiences that engage and connect employees, making them a part of the company’s success story. 


    We analysed 10 top UK companies per each of the 18 sectors. For each company, we looked at Glassdoor review scores alongside median pay data, creating an index with the results. For all of the data, please get in touch!

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