Are employed people in South Caucasus satisfied with their jobs?

By Aneta Harutyunyan
CRRC-Armenia Junior Fellow

Employee satisfaction is one of the ultimate goals of any organization as it can enhance the performance of the business as well as decrease employee turnover (Javed, Balouch, Hassan 2014). Employee satisfaction can be affected by a number of socio-demographic factors such as age, gender, occupation, the level of education, as well as by salary/compensation (Clark,Oswald and Warr 1996, Ganzach 2003, Kaiser 2005, Qasim, Cheema and Syed 2012). Utilizing the 2013 wave of Caucasus Barometer survey conducted by the Caucasus Research Resource Centers, the current blog post aims at examining the relationship between job satisfaction and remuneration in the three republics of the South Caucasus: Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia. For this purpose, the following questions are examined:
  1.  “To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statement?"
     “I am fairly compensated.”
  2. “Overall, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your job?”
Before proceeding with the analysis of the results, it is worth mentioning the small share of employment rate in the three republics. In particular, according to the Caucasus Barometer survey only 25% of the respondents are employed in Armenia (462 respondents out of 1840), 29% in Azerbaijan (582 respondents out of 2004) and 23% in Georgia (491 respondents out of 2137) [1]  (CaucasusBarometer 2013). 

As depicted in Chart 1, among the three countries employed respondents of Azerbaijan comprise majority who agree that they are fairly compensated (61%). In contrast to those in Azerbaijan, the majority of employed people in Armenia and Georgia consider their remuneration as unfair (66% and 51%, respectively). 

                             Chart 1
Note: The original question on fair compensation was recoded. Answer options “Completely agree”, “Somewhat agree” were recoded into “Agree”, and similarly, “Completely disagree”, “Somewhat disagree” options were combined into “Disagree”.

Analyzing the second question, we can again identify noticeable differences in the level of job satisfaction across the three countries. In particular, as shown in Chart 2, while in Azerbaijan the majority of the respondents (73%) are satisfied with their jobs, in Armenia and Georgia the satisfaction drops to 32% and 34%, respectively. In Armenia and Georgia, the majority of the employed respondents (41% and 50%, respectively) are neither satisfied nor dissatisfied with their jobs. 

                             Chart 2
Note: The original question on the overall level of job satisfaction was recoded. Answer options “Very satisfied”, “Somewhat satisfied” were combined into “Satisfied”, and similarly, “Very dissatisfied”, “Somewhat dissatisfied” were combined into “Dissatisfied”. “Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied” was not recoded.  

As a next step, cross-tabulation is implemented to identify a possible relationship between job satisfaction and employee compensation. As Chart 3 illustrates, there seems to be a strong relationship between job satisfaction and employee remuneration in Azerbaijan. Particularly, 87% of those employed respondents, who agreed that they are fairly compensated, are satisfied with their jobs. This relationship drops to 52% and 55% in Armenia and Georgia, respectively.

                             Chart 3
In summary, analyzing the results of two interrelated questions of the 2013 wave of the Caucasus Barometer survey, this blog post revealed a weak relationship between employee compensation and job satisfaction. In particular, out of three countries, we identified that Armenia and Georgia showed the weakest positive relationship (i.e., people who consider to be fairly compensated are satisfied with their jobs) between these two variables.  

[1] Please note that this blog post considers only those who have a job (employee).
It is also noteworthy that the results of Caucasus Barometer 2013 survey vary from those of the International Labor Organization and National Statistics offices of the three countries by reason of difference in formulation of the question. 

Caucasus Barometer 2013