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Insight series: Happiness at Work

Producing actionable data-based recommendations for workplace wellbeing with the data to back it up


We have regularly collaborated with If You Could, a creative jobs platform, to develop and analyse customised surveys targeting job seekers, employees, and employers to understand what truly matters to them. 


In our 2021 Happiness at Work project, 380 individuals working in the creative industry participated in a 15-minute survey on job satisfaction, work life balance, and mental wellbeing. Using validated psychological measures, we assessed participants' life satisfaction, their perceived life worth, happiness, and anxiety. We asked employees what is most important to them at work, how their job satisfaction could be improved and any ‘red flags’ when seeking employment. Our rigorous approach to recruiting and analysis produced robust insights that shed light on the current landscape of the creative job industry.


We analysed the survey data using traditional quantitative (i.e. number-based data) questions, supported with insightful free text from respondents. We showed that job satisfaction, happiness at work, and work-life balance among individuals in the creative industries were lower than the national average. As expected, more junior workers were the most impacted. Free-text data provided several insights into why these may be, and helped refine recommendations for how employers can improve happiness at work. 


We produced five recommendations for IYC, highlighting what truly matters to their audience of creative organisations and workers, to improve employee happiness and well-being. Depending on your organisation or needs, these could include better management, increased pay and appreciation, opportunities for career development and creative freedom, or the provision of flexible working. And for the ultimate benefit, a generous holiday allowance could be the big win!

As well as providing a framework for IYC’s ongoing support for creative industries, the research resulted in an insight report and stimulated many social media discussions through a staggered release of our insights. 

For our full report, click the icon below 👇

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