Job satisfaction report

The pleasure of work is open to anyone who can develop some specialised skill, provided that he can get satisfaction from the exercise of his skill without demanding universal applause.
— Bertrand Russell

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Methodological notes: 

  • Job satisfaction is measured using the JDS scale (Hackman & Oldham, 1974) and is composed of the average of three survey items: “Generally speaking, I am very satisfied with my current job”“I am generally satisfied with the kind of work I do in my current job”, and “I frequently think of quitting my current job” (reverse coded). 

  • Respondents’ agreement with each of the three statement is measured using a 5-point Likert scale with 5 indicating strong agreement and 1 indicating strong disagreementAll scales reported below correspond to this 5-point agreement scale, unless otherwise indicated.

  • Data is collected via field survey that take place in major transportation hubs in Macao as well as several residential areas. Respondents are selected following a systematic random sampling technique and interviews are conducted face-to-face with the help of a structured questionnaire. Interviews are conducted in either English or Chinese. Respondents are interviewed if they are permanent or non-permanent residents, or hold non-resident worker’s permit, and are employed full-time in Macao at the time of the survey. 

  • Total number of respondents for the 2012 survey wave was 525 and 1,046 for 2013. Description of the sample’s  characteristics can be found here.


1.0  Overall job satisfaction

Compared to 2012, there was a slight but significant increase in overall job satisfaction in all employment sectors. It is notable, however, that the means for 2012 and 2013, are only slightly above the 5-point satisfaction scale mid-point of 3.00.

2.0 Job satisfaction by industry sector

Respondents from all industry sectors report job satisfaction higher than the mid-point of 3.0 in the 5-point agreement scale. Of the 12 industry sectors, workers from the gaming and casino sectors report the lowest  levels of job satisfaction, followed next by those in the food and beverage sectors and by workers in hotels and resorts. Workers employed in other sectors (i.e., other than those listed) report the highest levels of job satisfaction, followed by workers in public administration. 

Job satisfaction levels were better in most sectors in 2013, with the exception of those working in travel agencies, tour companies and MICE organizations, as well as those in the construction, manufacturing and utility sectors.

(Note: the industry classification system in this chart follows that of the Census and Statistics Bureau of Macau or DSEC.) 

3.0 Job satisfaction by monthly income

Employees with monthly income of MOP30,000 or above report significantly higher levels of job satisfaction than those earning below MOP30,000. This pattern arises for both 2012 and 2013. Employees earning up to MOP9,999, however, expressed significantly better job satisfaction in 2013 compared to 2012.

4.0 Job satisfaction by level of educational attainment

With the exception of workers having received no formal education, the level of job satisfaction hardly differs between those with different types of educational attainment, although this can change from year-to-year. Workers with no formal educational attainment report significantly lower job satisfaction compared to those with some or extensive educational attainments. The lack of difference in job satisfaction between workers of different educational attainment seems to suggest a lack of “fit” between what their employment requires from them and the skills and abilities they have acquired or for which they have been formally trained or educated.

5.0 Job satisfaction by residency status

There is little difference between permanent and non-permanent residents in the level of their job satisfaction, except in 2013 when non-permanent residents expressed slightly better levels of job satisfaction. Non-permanent workers tend to exhibit greater variation in the level of their job satisfaction (as suggested by the larger bands of the error bars in the chart below). Generally, however, non-residents permit holders tend to express lower levels of job satisfaction compared to others.

6.0 Job satisfaction by marital status

Married workers expressed higher levels of job satisfaction compared to their single or unattached colleagues in 2013 and slightly better than their job satisfaction in 2012. 

7.0 Job satisfaction by presence of children

Workers with children significantly expressed higher levels of job satisfaction compared to their colleagues who have no children in 2013 and slightly better than their job satisfaction in 2012.

8.0 Job satisfaction by gender

Little if any difference in job satisfaction levels exists between male and female workers, suggesting good gender equality conditions at Macau’s organizations.

9.0 Job satisfaction by shift work duty

Employees working in shift or irregular schedules express lower overall job satisfaction than those working with regular hours. The difference in job satisfaction may have even widened in 2013, compared to 2012.

End of report.