Objective: To study the work satisfaction of general practice staff, the differences between types of staff, and the individual and organisational factors associated with work satisfaction.
Design, setting and participants: Cross-sectional multipractice study based on a self-completed job satisfaction survey of 626 practice staff in 96 general practices in Australia between 16 December 2003 and 8 October 2004.
Main outcome measures: Job satisfaction scores for all staff and for general practitioners alone; relationship between job satisfaction and the team climate, practice size, particular jobs within practices, demographic characteristics of participants, and geographical location of practices.
Results: The response rate was 65%. Job satisfaction was high, with a mean score of 5.66 (95% CI, 5.60-5.72). Multilevel analysis showed that all general practice staff were highly satisfied if they worked in a practice with a good team climate. Practice managers reported the highest satisfaction with their work. Practice size and individual characteristics such as the sex of the participant were unrelated to job satisfaction. GPs tended to have lower satisfaction than other staff in relation to income, recognition for good work and hours of work. Rural GPs were more satisfied.
Conclusions: Most general practice staff are satisfied with their work. Facilitating teamwork may be a key strategy for both recruitment and retention of the general practice workforce, especially staff who are not GPs.