JOB SATISFACTION IN HEALTH CARE WORKERS
Dragana Nikic, Mirjana Arandjelovic, Maja Nikolic and Aleksandra Stankovic
Job satisfaction is very important factor of productivity and job quality, especially in
health care workers. The aim of the paper was to assess some of the parameters of job
satisfaction among heath care workers. The pilot cross-secional study conducted in the
Clinical Center Nis from February to June 2007. Instrument for investigation was MM-40
EA questionnaire (Örebo University, Sweden). Interviews of physicians and nurses were
conducted by the Faculty of Medicine students. 770 health care workers (209 male, 561
female) were polled, mean age 40.65±9.82 years. Most of the participants thought that
their work was interesting and stimulating, but that they worked too hard. The health care
workers were not satisfied with their influence on the work organization, as well as on the
working environment conditions. More than half of participants had very good experiences
with teamwork. The investigations in this field should have high priority in the country in
transition. Acta Medica Medianae 2008; 47(4):9-12.
Key words: health care workers, job satisfaction, questionnaire
Faculty of Medicine in Nis
Contact: Maja Nikolic
Public Health Institute Nis
50 Dr Zorana Djindjic Blvd.
18000 Nis. Serbia
Tel.: 018-226-384 lok140
*This investigation is within the project of
Ministry for Science and Technological
Development in Serbia (Project number 21016):
Initiation and development of coherent
engagement of all economic branches and their
workers into the health promotion, ethical codex
and quality of life as the condition for their
Job satisfaction in workers is a very
important parameter that influences productivity
as well as quality of work. This complex
phenomenon is an attitude towards one’s job that
has an impact not only on motivation, but also on
career, health and relation with co-workers (1-3).
Previous studies (4,5) show that job
satisfaction depends not only on nature of work,
but on one’s expectations regarding that work.
Generalisation always brings some risks since
there are different subjective factors and expe-
ctations in different professions important for job
Job satisfaction in health care workers has
a great impact on quality, effectiveness and work
efficiency and at the same time on health-care
costs. Besides its importance for patients and
health care system as a whole, professional sati-
sfaction in health care workers is directly connected
with absence from work, human relations and
organisation of work (6-8). In a lot of countries,
job satisfaction survey is regulary conducted, and
by monitoring obtained data it is possible to
notice omissions in organisation of work.
Health care workers face increased risk for
work discontent. Stress, burnout and complex
shift work are important determinants of health
care workers’ well-being and they also influence
their professional satisfaction (9,10).
Worldwide, studies showed that many
factors have impact on job satisfaction in health
care workers, such as: gender, age, level of
education, work experience, way of organisation
of work, working conditions, payment, working
hours, promotions and so on (11-15).
In our country, surveys on job satisfaction
have been scarecely done so far. The Ministry of
Health in Serbia intensified surveys on satisfaction
of health-care users, as well as of health care
workers, in order to give better health protection
in our country.
The aim of our study is to evaluate job
satisfaction in health care workers and to identify
factors that contribute to their professional
Material and methods
A transversal study was conducted in the
Clinical Center Nis in the period from February to
June 2007. Participation in the study was on
The sample involved health-care workers of
different education level. Out of 800 employees,
consent to interview was obtained from 770 of
Interviews were done by Nis Medical School
graduates using MM-040 EA (16) questionnaire
surveys. According to literature data the questionnaire
Job satisfaction in health care workers Dragana Nikić et al.
was designed by experts from Örebo University in
Sweeden in order to interview employees about
their working conditions that have impact on
their health. The questionnaire comprises five
parts. In this study the part regarding job
satisfaction was investigated using the MM 40
with the following four questions:
• Do you regard your work as interesting
• Do you have too much work to do?
• Do you have an opportunuty to influence
your working conditions?
• Do your fellow workers help you with
problems you may have in your work?
There were four alternative response
categories to the questions (yes, often; yes,
sometimes; no, seldom; no, never).
For the statistical descriptive and analytic
processing, the Epi info 6.o statistical program
In this investigation, 770 health care
workers were enrolled, 209 male and 561 female
(Table 1). Mean age was 40.65 ±9.82 years.
There was no statistically significant difference in
age in different categories according to qualifi-
cations (Kruskal-Wallis χ2-test = 71.7, P>0.001)
The greatest number (427) of respondents
had secondary education, 212 of them were
general practitioners and specialists. About 5% of
employees had higher qualifications, and there
were about 10% of employees with scientific
position (masters and doctors of science).
Table 1. Characteristics of respondents
Male 209 27,14%
Female 561 72,86%
Mean age (Xsr± SD) 40.65±9.82
Under 35 years 394 51,16%
36 to 55 years 167 21.70%
Over 55 years 427 55,45%
Secondary education 427 55,45%
Higher qualification 44 5,71%
High qualification 212 27.53%
With scientific position 87 11.31%
The respondents answered the questions as it is
showed in tables 2-5.
Table 2. Answers to the question if the work was
interesting and stimulating (%)
Qualification often sometimes seldom never
secondary 46.11 41.35 10.77 1.77
higher 58.13 34.88 6,97 0.02
high 70.61 27.01 1,89 0.49
scientific position 77.01 20.69 0.00 2,21
From this table it can be seen that perceiving
work as interesting and stimulating increases
with qualifications, so the gratest number of
masters and doctors of science replied that their
job was interesting and stimulating (77.01%),
while the percentage is considerably lower in
employees with secondary education (46.11%).
Table 3. Respondents’ answers to the question if they
had too much work to do (%)
Qualification often sometimes seldom never
secondary 68.85 28.57 2,20 0.38
higher 75.00 25.00 0.00 0.00
high 74.06 24.52 1,42 0.00
scientific position 75.86 24.14 0.00 0.00
The gratest number of respondents think
they are often overloaded with work. The percenage
is between 68.85 to 75.86%.
Table 4. Respondents’ answers to the question if
they have an opportunity to influence their working
qualification often sometimes seldom never
secondary 6.91 27.90 42.22 22.97
higher 23.83 16,66 40.47 19.04.
high 16.50 39.15 36.79 7.56
position 18.39 37.93 35.63 8.05
Respondents regarded their influence to
working conditions as poorly significant and they
mostly answered this question as „seldom“.
Table 5. Respondents’ answers to the question if their
fellow workers help with problems at work (%)
qualification often sometimes seldom never
secondary 50.62 39.21 7.94 2.23
higher 63.63 27.27 9.09 0.01
high 58.29 30.80 9,47 1.21
position 55.17 35.63 8.05 1.15
The majority of respondants were positive
about team work and organisation of work and more
than half of them claimed they often received
help from their colleagues.
Surveys on satisfaction of customer service
are most often used in organisations that have
market business in order to increase profit. If we
regard health as goods which qualities are to be
constantly improved, then surveys on patients’
satisfaction by health service are conducted
(17,18). But, health-care workers are seldom
interviewed about their working conditions,
regardless of the fact that they provide health
services and enhance health (19,20).
A questionnaire used in this study is mainly
used for examination of microclimatic conditions
of work environment, although there is a section
about job satisfaction. In most studies that used
Acta Medica Medianae 2008,Vol.47 Job satisfaction in health care workers
this widely accepted questionnaire, data on job
satisfaction were of secondary importance.
There are numeruous more detailed questio-
nnaries used worldwide for job satisfaction.
However, the basic aim of our investigation was
to identify problems in our health care institutions.
The results showed that obviously there is a
problem that requires greater attention. The
positive side of this study is that by examining
conditions in which health-care workers perform
their duties, parameters for employees’ satisfa-
ction were observed for the first time.
The results showed that more diverse and
qualified professional work is more stimulating.
But, it should be noted that more professional
work requires greater responsibilities and demands,
as well as more detailed preparations and great
previous knowledge of employees.
More than two thirds of employees think
they are overloaded with work. As the number of
employees in health-care institutions is in accorda-
nce with world’s normatives, it is employees
subjective experience on work overload, or organi-
sation of work is not adequate. It is well known
that work overload is greater if responsibilities
and duties are not adequately distributed.
Employees are not satisfied with their
influence on organisation of work and more than
one third think they can seldom influence the
work conditions. Such results are not satisfa-
ctory, and management education at all levels in
health-care institutions in our country should be
undertaken. Motivation of employees is also
important in solving problems in this field.
Team work, as an important factor in
functioning of health-care system, was assessed
in respondents and probably has an impact on
quality of health-care services.
The questionnaire used had only four questi-
ons, but it can be accepted as a very useful tool
for quick screening in a health-care institution,
especially if we take into account that in our
conditions fast and cheap methods are more
suitable than complex and more detailed ones. Of
course, obtained framework about presence of
certain problems in job satisfaction in health care
workers should be accepted as a basis for more
detailed investigation if necessary. A special attention
should be directed to education and information
of health care workers, to development of team
work and to organisation of work.
The majority of employed health care workers
think their job is interesting, and their perception
is in correlation with their qualifications. Most of
the respondents claim they are overloaded with
work, and the majority can rely on their fellow
workers. Minority of respondents think they can
influence their work conditions. These preliminary
results show that there is a need for education in
communication skills and prevention measures
for health improvements and job satisfaction. This
pilot investigation points out that it is necessary to
apply interventions in certain sections that are
related to job satisfaction in health care workers.
A greater engagement of relevant structures in
taking and directing necessary measures at the
work place to improve satisfaction and well-being
of the personnel is required.
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ZADOVOLJSTVO POSLOM KOD ZDRAVSTVENIH RADNIKA
Dragana Nikić, Mirjana Aranđelović, Maja Nikolić i Aleksandra Stanković
Zadovoljstvo poslom zdravstvenih radnika je vrlo važan parametar koji utiče na
kvalitet pružanja zdravstvene zaštite, kao i motivaciju zaposlenih. Cilj ovog rada bio je
oceniti neke od parametara zadovoljstva poslom kod zdravstvenih radnika. Pilot studija
sprovedena je u Kliničkom centru u Nišu u periodu od februara do juna 2007 god.
Instrument istraživanja bio je upitnik MM-40 EA koji je izradio Örebo univerzitet iz
Švedske. Anketiranje su radili studenti završne godine Medicinskog fakulteta u Nišu.
Ispitano je 770 zdravstvenih radnika (209 muškaraca i 561 žena), prosečne starosti
40.65±9.82 godina. Većina anketiranih smatra da im je posao zanimljiv i stimulativan, ali
da previše rade. Zaposleni nisu bili zadovoljni svojim uticajem na organizaciju posla, kao i
uslovima rada. O timskom radu se više od polovine ispitanika izrazilo pozitivno. Očigledno
je da je potrebno veće angažovanje u cilju poboljšanja zadovoljstva zaposlenih kod nas, te
slična istraživanja treba ohrabriti. Acta Medica Medianae 2008;47(4):9-12.
Ključne reči: zdravstveni radnici, zadovoljstvo poslom, anketa