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

Some industries are known for the incredible opportunities they offer, but other sectors remain shrouded in mystery when it comes to employee satisfaction.

TrouDigital has looked into how this varies across some of today’s biggest industries, to reveal which sectors are best for workers, and which are best avoided.

To do this they gathered data which included feedback and reviews from job seeker platform Glassdoor, along with employee numbers and annual turnover. They then divided the annual turnover of each company by the number of satisfied employees, in order to calculate profitability per satisfied employee. The results were then ordered to create a list of most to least satisfied industries.

According to the research, the top 15 industries for employee satisfaction were:



Industry Average Glassdoor Rating Average Satisfaction % Revenue / satisfied employee (score) Final TrouDigital avg. score (most satisfied employees)
1 Restaurants 3.7 73 57.40 56.60
2 Retail 3.6 72 17.75 55.69
3 Financial services 3.9 77 37.77 44.24
4 Construction 4 81 12.63 42.30
5 Real estate 3.9 78 27.60 20.18
6 Insurance 3.7 73 4.01 16.85
7 Media 4 80 3.12 13.31
8 E-Commerce & Retail 3.3 65 13.47 12.93
9 Manufacturing 4 80 1.46 12.75
10 Energy 4.1 82 7.01 12.03
11 Education 3.7 74 1.20 8.80
12 Food 3.6 72 1.64 7.66
13 Chemicals 3.5 70 3.05 6.84
14 Soft drinks business 3.5 70 2.35 6.60
15 Retail & Building materials 3.3 66 2.18 3.97

The clear winner in terms of employee satisfaction is the restaurant industry. This industry achieved a satisfaction score of 73%, giving it an average score of 56.60 for the most satisfied employees.

The retail sector was a close runner up, with a satisfaction score of 55.69, with the financial industry coming in third. This sector achieved an average score of 44.24, and an impressive employee satisfaction rating of 77%.

Despite recording the highest percentage of employee satisfaction (82%), the energy sector failed to top the poll. This sector was ranked 10th, despite having the best Glassdoor reviews in the study.

Some of the least satisfied employees were found in the building materials industry, which came last in this study. The industry had an average score of 3.97, with 66% of employees recording good satisfaction levels via Glassdoor.

Alistair Cousins, Marketing Manager at TrouDigital said: “Employee satisfaction is more than just an indicator of workplace morale, it is a barometer of a business’s overall health. Higher employee satisfaction generally equates to increased productivity, reduced staff turnover and ultimately, improved revenue. Our study was designed to highlight not only the industries that excel in this area, but also those with room for growth.

“The data highlights that every industry has unique challenges and successes when it comes to employee satisfaction. This reinforces the need for tailored communication and engagement strategies. We are currently working with organisations across a range of sectors globally to enhance their internal communication, boost employee engagement, and ultimately, drive employee satisfaction. By providing a platform for instant, engaging and targeted communication, we are helping organisations foster an environment where employee satisfaction can flourish.”