Singapore's Workforce has the Poorest Mental Health, Job Satisfaction, and Quality of Life, New Study Finds

13 September 2022 08:00 WIB

TEMPO.CO, Singapore - A new region-wide study has identified the Singaporean workforce as having the worst mental health across Southeast Asia, with local employees surveyed claiming the lowest levels of engagement, job satisfaction, and overall quality of life.

Conducted by Southeast Asian consumer research company, Milieu Insight, in collaboration with Intellect, this Hustle Culture study surveyed 3,000 employees across Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines, and discovered only 57% of Singaporeans rated their mental health to be “good”, “very good” or “excellent”, compared to 68% in Indonesia and 78% in the Philippines. To unpack the findings, the firms brought together Edoardo Liotta, Journalist from Rice Media, Sally Mounir,  Psychotherapist from Intellect and Stephen Tracy, Chief Operating Officer from Milieu Insight,  to discuss the results over a two-part video based interview, which can be viewed here – Part 1 and Part 2.

While numerous factors have contributed to burnout and fatigue among the workforce - including financial and geopolitical uncertainties, Covid-19, a potential global recession on the horizon - the glamourisation of productivity and the “rise and grind” mentality has taken its toll on the region’s workforce, especially younger employees. According to the study, the top reasons employees push themselves so hard is the desire to build a better life for themselves and their loved ones (58%), achieving a sense of accomplishment (53%), and earning more income (50%).

Across all 3 countries, 16-24 year olds tend to be motivated by the “fear of not being able to do as well as my peers”, with 30% in Singapore, 20% in the Philippines and 11% in Indonesia indicating so. As a result, 50% of employees across the region have reported feeling burnt out from work at least a few times a month, with 41% “often” or “always” feeling as though they cannot stop thinking about work.

Insights from the study show that on average, Singapore employees spend less than or as much time at work than their regional counterparts, but report the lowest levels of engagement and job satisfaction. In Singapore, just 42% of talent reported high engagement at work (having indicated a score of 8 or higher on a scale of 1 to 10), compared to 52% of Indonesian employees and 56% of Filipino employees. At the same time, 26% of Singaporeans employees are dissatisfied with their job, compared to 15% in Indonesia and 17% in the Philippines.

Even more worryingly, half (52%) of Singapore employees report having poor quality of life, compared to 37% and 36% in Indonesia and the Philippines respectively. This also translates into poor sleep, with 30% of Singaporeans admitting to poor sleep quality (having indicated a score of 4 or below on a scale of 0 to 10), compared to 19% of Indonesian employees and 16% of Filipino employees.

TEMPO

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