How does America work? A kununu study

Susanna Kahr

Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers. Furthermore, the U.S. is one of the few countries in the world that does not have a maximum length for the working week and is the only country that has no legally mandated annual leave.(1) You may wonder why we are telling you this. Well, as Americans, spending so much time at work can make a huge difference on your overall happiness and on whether you love or hate your job. That’s why kununu is collecting employer reviews from all across America to create authentic workplace insights that help you find your perfect employer. Which industry is the best to work in? And what can you expect from an American employer? Read on to find out more!

Office jobs winning

When it comes to comparing employer satisfaction across industries, Human Resources and Recruiting is winning! With an industry average score of 3.8 points (out of 5) it actually just scored slightly higher than Information Technology and Network Security which takes second place. Although this industry is famous for its supportive management, a kununu user tells that being self-motivated is what gets you ahead. Speaking of getting ahead, third place goes to Consulting, including giant American management consultancies that are well known all around the world like McKinsey & Company or A.T. Kearney.

Looking at the Top 10 industries, office jobs are clearly winning. Whilst Marketing, Accounting and Public Administration are also highly popular amongst American employees, the Textile Industry, Purchasing and Packing only have an industry average score of 3.1 points.

Want to know how your industry scores? Check out our list of all of the industries and get further insights at kununu, one of the world’s largest employer rating platforms!

PlaceIndustryAverage Score
1Human Resources / Staffing and Recruiting3.8
2Information Technology and Services / Network Security3.79
5Tax Consulting / Auditing 3.7
7Primary & Secondary Education / Higher Education / E-Learning3.66
8Accounting / Financial Services3.58
9Marketing / Advertising / PR3.58
10Public Administration3.58
11Banking / Investment Banking / Investment Management3.55
13Civic & Social Organizations / Non-profits3.5
14Health, Wellness & Fitness3.49
15Hospital & Health Care3.48
16Event Planning & Event Management3.46
17Office Administration3.46
19Leisure, Travel & Tourism / Hospitality3.44
21Construction / Architecture & Planning3.43
22Research and Development / Sciences3.43
23Consumer Electronics3.42
24Legal Services3.42
25Real Estate / Facility Management3.41
27Medical Technology / Biotechnology3.39
28Arts / Culture / Entertainment3.38
29Service and Support3.38
30Market Research3.36
31Other Industries3.35
32Retail and Consumer Goods3.35
33Broadcast Media / Media Production3.33
36Transportation and Logistics3.27
38Food Production / Farming3.24
40Textiles and Design3.14

A country of safe and inclusive workplaces

On kununu, employees can rate their employer across 18 different categories like “challenging work”, “company culture” or “career development.” Interestingly, the category that scores the highest in the U.S. is workplace safety. For example, one employee at Intel claims that they avoid injuries and lawsuits and another at the U.S. Government says that his employer does very well in this area. But apart from safety, American workplaces are also awarded for their great gender equality, accessibility and friendly attitude towards older colleagues. Ultimate Software is just one of the companies that lives this mentality: “The inclusiveness, the autonomy, the overall vibe is amazing,”one employee says. Kind of what you might expect of the American mindset? Probably, but there’s a catch. The U.S. scores really bad in the “career development” and “communication” categories. But don’t worry, we asked the experts about this and they have some tips to help you, check them out!

1Workplace Safety3.76
2Gender Equality3.7
3Handicap Accessibility3.7
4Attitude towards older colleagues3.64
6Level of Autonomy3.5
7Challenging Work3.5
8Company Image3.49
9Office/Work Environment3.48
11Company Culture3.41
13Job security3.33
14Work-Life Balance3.3
15Overall Compensation for your work3.24
16Support from Management3.18
17Career Development3.18

USA beyond European countries

Imagine a debate between Uncle Sam and a structured German professional. Who do you think is the better employer? Actually, it’s the German. With an average employer satisfaction in Germany, Austria and Switzerland (where kununu is also contributing to more transparent workplaces) of 3.53 points, the European countries are one step ahead of the U.S. with an average score of 3.40.



Do you enjoy working in your industry? What do you love about your employer and what do you hate? Tell us more about your experiences by writing an anonymous employer review at kununu!


share your voice