CIOs appear to be a relatively happy bunch, despite the pressures of the job.
Robert Half Technology surveyed 2,500 U.S. CIOs in 25 metropolitan areas. As a group, the tech leaders rated their overall job satisfaction at 8.5 in a 10-point scale. Respondents from 10 cities reported above-average happiness, with Miami hosting the most content IT chiefs.
The top 10 cities for CIO job satisfaction, according to the tech staffing firm, are:
3. Des Moines, Iowa
7. Raleigh, NC
8. Salt Lake City
10. San Francisco
"Over the past several years, CIOs have taken on a significant amount of responsibility to help organizations meet business goals through technology initiatives," said John Reed, senior executive director of Robert Half Technology, in a statement. "While the pressure to deliver has risen, having the opportunity to influence strategy and be a key contributor to success certainly adds to job satisfaction."
This isn’t the first time the tech staffing firm has studied on-the-job happiness.
Earlier this year, Robert Half Technology's parent company, Robert Half, teamed with Happiness Works, a London-based organization that aims to use analytics to help companies build happier teams. The two organizations surveyed more than 12,000 workers in the U.S. and Canada to gauge their happiness levels.
The Robert Half/Happiness Works research found that, overall, happiness tends to wane after a year on the job. This isn’t specific to tech; among all occupations studied, the research found that workers with between one and two years on the job are less happy, less interested in their work, and more stressed than those employees who are still in their first year on the job.
Things starts to turn around after that second-year slump: People with three years or more on the job report higher happiness levels and increasing interest levels, according to the Robert Half/Happiness Works data. The most-tenured people in the study – those with 21 years or more on the job – showed the highest level of interest in their work.
"Once they get past year one, the honeymoon appears to be over for many professionals," said Paul McDonald, senior executive director of Robert Half, in a statement. "After 12 months on the job, employees are expected to work more autonomously and take on added responsibility. At the same time, aspects of the job that at first seemed novel and interesting may lose their luster."
If companies are proactive about addressing the tendency for employees to lose their zeal in the second year of work, they can take steps to keep employees engaged and minimize the risk of losing staff members, McDonald said. “This includes providing stretch assignments and ensuring that workloads are manageable,” he said.
Among all the occupations studied in the Robert Half/Happiness Works research, technology pros rate highly when it comes to happiness at work. The top three drivers for job satisfaction among technology professionals are: pride in their organization, feeling appreciated, and interest in their work.