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Where the Great Jobs Are

What the whole world wants is a good job. That was the breakthrough finding from Gallup's first World Poll survey 10 years ago, and it continues to be true.

However, there is a problem with how the world defines and measures what a good job is. "Unemployment" -- the most quoted jobs metric in the world -- is misleading, as it grossly underestimates the global jobs problem. There is another problem with current jobs metrics: There is no figure that measures the quality of people's jobs.

Gallup defines a real job or a good job -- the type of job the whole world wants -- as 30+ hours per week of consistent work with a paycheck from an employer. Based on this definition, Gallup projects that 1.3 billion out of the world's roughly 5 billion adults have a good job. Of these 1.3 billion, roughly 12% are engaged at work and have great jobs. Out of a global workforce of an estimated 3.2 billion adults who are working or looking for work, only 5% (161 million people) have a great job. This means about 3 billion people who want a great job don't have one.


The wide deficits between "good jobs" and "great jobs" in every country mean there are vast numbers of employees who are emotionally disconnected from their workplace and are less likely to be productive -- even if they have "good jobs." Global leaders need to make "great job" creation a top priority. Using better metrics to understand the real jobs situation is a start.

Gallup's new report released Friday, Gallup Global Report: Where the Great Jobs Are, offers a first look at the real jobs situation in 138 countries, revealing where the good -- and great -- jobs are, and where the greatest deficits remain.

Read the full report.


Jon Clifton is Global Managing Partner at Gallup.

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