- By Angelica Wedell -
Do women see the local government workplace differently from their male colleagues? As the profession seeks to promote healthier organizations that equally provide job satisfaction and opportunities for advancement, this is a question we must ask. Fortunately, the answers are not beyond the reach of public sector managers. National Research Center, Inc. (NRC) presents survey data that highlights the perspectives of local government employees across the U.S.
Why assess the workplace this way? We are here because we love the profession. We want to see it succeed. We want fulfillment and opportunity in our jobs. We want diverse and inclusive organizations that attract and maintain talent and develop leaders. To get that, we must understand where we are.
#13Percent: Percentage of Women in CEO/CAO Positions
Reported by the ICMA Task Force on Women in the Profession. Since 2015, the needle has only moved up a few percentage points. Today, we are not looking at recruiting practices. We are taking an internal look at the workplace itself.
These data tell us what people think. They don’t tell us why. But they allow us to compare and apply what we know in order to open discussion and to assess where we are. So we can do better. I’m about to share highlights of aggregate data on a national scale, and no individual organizations will be revealed. For an accurate view of the workplace climate in your own organization, I would encourage you to have a survey conducted of your employees.
It is interesting to note that overall, women tend to give higher ratings than men on most questions. And in many categories, women and men felt just about the same. However, local government managers may want to pay special attention to those categories where opinions between genders were (at least somewhat) significantly different.
How well the employee is a good match for the position. They are happy with what they do. They feel they do a good job. Their work matters. Women and men gave similar ratings.
|Overall job satisfaction||84%||82%|
|Satisfaction from responsibilities||85%||85%|
|Opportunity to do what I do best||80%||77%|
How employees feel about working for their organization. How they feel about the leadership and management. On these items, women consistently gave higher ratings than men – and that’s at least 5 percentage points or more higher on each of these (but one).
|Likely to recommend||86%||79%|
|Organization is a good employer||86%||80%|
|Values match or fit||85%||80%|
|Atmosphere of trust and confidence||65%||65%|
|Modeling a high standard||61%||55%|
|Confidence in the leadership||59%||52%|
How well the organization fosters and models an atmosphere that is respectful and ethical to all employees, regardless of demographic background. Women and men gave similar ratings.
|A respectful atmosphere||61%||60%|
|Communicating standards of ethical behavior||67%||66%|
|Modeling standards of ethical behavior||62%||59%|
|Free of violence or harassment||78%||79%|
How fairly the organization deals with disciplinary issues. How well management resolves concerns and issues and communicates appropriately with employees. Men gave higher ratings.
|Resolving employee issues/concerns||64%||70%|
|Communicating resolution of issues/concerns||67%||74%|
|Dealing with low-performing employees||23%||24%|
|Discipline fairly and consistently||36%||38%|
Compensation: Salary, incentives, bonuses, etc. Overall benefits: Vacation, sick leave, health care, retirement plan, etc. Women gave higher ratings.
|Connection between compensation and performance||35%||33%|
Whether employees believe they have adequate opportunities for professional development, mentoring and promotion. How well employees feel they can further their career within their current organization. Men gave higher ratings.
|Coaching or mentoring employees||43%||45%|
|Opportunities for promotion||29%||39%|
|Opportunities to develop a career path||43%||49%|
|Assisting in meeting career goals||70%||75%|
Women and Men both tend to give high ratings for their organization as an employer. (83% Overall)
Women, especially, rate opportunities for promotion much lower. (29%)