2015 practitioners' survey: Training and engagement: professional development and job satisfaction levels

13th April 2015


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James George

Training and engagement: professional development and job satisfaction levels

A high level of personal commitment and motivation to develop and train is evident among practitioners responding to the 2015 IEMA survey. When asked about their main motivation for undertaking professional development in 2014, less than 2% cited the fact that it was required by the employer. Around 92% of respondents undertook some form of professional development or training in 2014.

Keeping up to date by reading essential materials (56.8%) and undertaking in-house training (50.9%) are the most common means to professional development, figure 12 shows. However, the importance of IEMA webinars has grown significantly, with almost half (49%) of those surveyed participating in them – up from 37.3% in 2013. Members undertook a mixture of IEMA (7.1%) and other (39.4%) training courses, and the same diversity of provision goes for events and conferences.

Figure 12 Professional development activities

As many as 27.1% of respondents attended an IEMA event or conference in 2014, while 38.9% attended other conferences, seminars or other events to further their development. Mentoring, which can help develop both interpersonal and professional skills, as well as confidence, has grown in importance this year, with 16.6% of respondents citing this as a source of professional development, compared with 12.9% in the previous survey.

There has been considerable job mobility among environment and sustainability practitioners over the past year, the survey findings suggest. Figure 14 shows that more than one-third (35.6%) of respondents have recently moved job, either within the same organisation or to a different one, with the remaining 64.4% staying in their current role. For a significant proportion of those taking on a new role this was an upward move, with one in five (20.1%) rising to a more senior post, and the majority staying at the same organisation. For a few (2.3%) there was a downward move.

Figure 14 Has your job role changed in the past 12 months?

Despite a healthy level of mobility, however, the majority of environment and sustainability practitioners say that they undertook professional development in 2014 in order to develop their knowledge and skills in their current role (44.5%) or be better at their current job (9%), with only 7.2% stating that they were doing so in order to secure a new role (figure 13).

Figure 13 Main motivation for undertaking professional development

Figure 15 presents the survey’s findings on respondents’ job satisfaction. Comfortably more than two-thirds of those polled (71.5%) are satisfied or very satisfied in their current job, up from 65.1% in the previous survey. Notably, the proportion who are very satisfied is up from 15.5% last year to almost one in four (24.1%) this year. A further one in five (19.5%) respondents feel indifferent about their role, while 7.7% feel dissatisfied and 1.3% are very dissatisfied.

Figure 15 Satisfaction in job role


Read the full 2015 pracitioners’ survey results:


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