According to the Foreign Ministry’s Job Satisfaction Survey, staff are most satisfied with the operating culture in the workplace and the content of work

The analysis of the Job Satisfaction Survey, conducted in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and in its missions abroad, has been completed and the results are now available. In the Ministry, job satisfaction has remained at the same level as it was in the previous survey, which was conducted in 2018. Job satisfaction in the missions abroad has improved. The overall results are at the same level as in surveys conducted in other central government organisations.

In the Ministry, the overall job satisfaction survey index was 3.59 (on a scale of 1–5). Compared to the previous survey, the index remained practically unchanged. In the missions abroad, the overall index rose from the previous survey to 3.84. In the whole Foreign Service, the combined overall job satisfaction index is now 3.71.

Other central government organisations conducted their job satisfaction surveys in late 2019. The other ministries’ overall index was 3.65, while central government as a whole scored 3.59.

Foreign Ministry staff gave the highest scores for the operating culture in the workplace (3.96). The lowest survey results concerned pay (2.84). In the missions abroad, the content of work and possibility to exert influence received the best score (4.17), while pay received the lowest score (2.98). In the area of management, the Ministry’s score remained at the previous level (3.51), but the missions’ result was somewhat higher (3.82) than in the previous survey.

In the survey, a separate section was dedicated to questions related to harassment, sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour. In the Foreign Ministry, 3.5 per cent of the respondents reported experiences of harassment, and 1 per cent told about sexual harassment. The corresponding figures in the missions abroad were 4.2, and 0.7 respectively. The Foreign Ministry’s results are roughly at the same level as the results of the other ministries and central government in 2019.

In early 2020, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs introduced its Guidelines on eliminating harassment and inappropriate behaviour in the workplace. The set of guidelines describes the practices and procedures used in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs for reporting, examining and resolving cases of harassment, sexual harassment and inappropriate behaviour. The aim is to ensure that all reports of harassment are examined and resolved objectively, without discrimination and as soon as possible.

The Foreign Service conducted its Job Satisfaction Survey between 26 February and 31 March 2020. The previous survey was carried out in autumn 2018. From now on, the annual survey will be conducted in spring so that it would not coincide with the implementation of the rotation scheme in August-September.

The number of respondents fell from the previous survey, probably because of the emergency conditions caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The response rate was 70.8 in the Ministry and 63.5 in the missions abroad, compared to 77.4 and 80.8 in the previous survey. The total number of respondents in the entire Foreign Service was 1568 (1859 in the previous survey).

Inquiries: Christian Lindholm, Director of Unit, and Hanna Oranen, Senior Specialist on Wellbeing at Work, Unit for Human Resources Development and Occupational Wellbeing.