Fewer than half of Department of Health staff are proud to work there, survey results published today reveal.

The staff survey was carried out last October and shows employee engagement is slightly less than it was in 2010 and less than other government departments in 2011.

Only 47 per cent of the 2,091 respondents gave a “positive” response when asked if they were proud to tell others they were part of the department. This is 3 per cent lower than last year.

Just over a third – 35 per cent – said they would recommend it as a “great place to work”, the same proportion that said poor performance was dealt with effectively.

Less than one in five – 19 per cent – agreed change was managed well in the department, and only 12 per cent felt that “when changes are made in the department they are usually for the better”.

A third believed the department was managed well.

Attitudes towards line managers were more positive, with 77 per cent saying they had confidence in their immediate manager.

Overall, employee engagement was 2 per cent worse than last year, 2 per cent lower than the average government department and 9 per cent lower than in the highest performing departments.

The DH said the index had “remained broadly level in a year of difficult change”. It highlighted improvements in answers to questions about how interested and challenged staff were in their jobs, which was above the civil service average. There was “room for improvement” in some other areas, it said.