Retail Workers Give Lowest Grades to Employers

February 14, 2006 ( - The Hay Group Insight Employee Survey Benchmark Report shows that employees in the retail industry give the lowest ratings of their company as a place to work compared to other industries.

“As retail becomes more and more competitive, stores are open longer hours, staffing is stretched and associates have to work harder and more varied schedules – mandatory weekends, late hours, and split schedules,” said Craig Rowley, vice president and head of Hay Group’s Retail Consulting Practice, in a news release. “This clearly has an impact on working conditions and climate.”

A little more than half (53%) of the retail employees responded favorably on whether the company adapts well to changing market conditions. This compares to almost 60% as a general industry average, according to the release. However, the report also found that employees in retail report job satisfaction that is clearly favorable and slightly above the general industry norm. Retail employees also rated very highly that their job provides them with interesting and challenging work.

Retail respondents gave higher rankings than the general norm in two key areas: they have a clear idea of expected results (88%) and poor performance is usually not tolerated (53%). The industry’s lowest scores were in the competitiveness of their salaries, where less than 20% responded favorably. The general industry norm was approximately double this percentage.

With the exception of career counseling, supervisors in the retail industry rated on par with the norm. However, respondents’ ratings of their peers, when it comes to cooperation received, is not as high relative to the average across all industries.

The Hay Group Insight’s survey group has a database of approximately 1.2 million employees in over 400 organizations worldwide in a variety of key industries. The Web site is .