The purpose of this paper is to study the perceived job quality and job satisfaction among third-sector employees and compare job quality in the third, public and private sector.
The study is based on the quality of work life (QWL) survey data gathered by Statistics Finland. The QWL data are complemented with data set collected among third-sector employees. In the sector comparisons percentage shares were used to compare different dimensions of job quality between the sectors. Regression analysis was used to control the structural labour market differences between the sectors.
The results show that job quality in the third sector differs substantially from that in both the public and private sectors. Employees in the third sector are less satisfied with their jobs than others. They perceive their work more autonomous than others. Compared to private-sector employees, third-sector employees perceive their jobs as less insecure. They also report more intensity and qualitative insecurity than employees in other sectors.
The sample consist only trade union members. The generalisability of results to non-unionized employees may be limited.
Previously it has been stated that third-sector employees enjoy greater job satisfaction due to intrinsic work benefits related to non-profit work. There is, however, small number of empirical studies trying to compare systematically job quality between the sectors. The present analysis contradicts the previous findings of higher job satisfaction in the third sector.
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