Just 20pc of employees fully trust their boss to keep them fully informed of important changes in their organisation, according to a new survey.
The study, conducted by corporate communication specialists PSG Plus, also found that only one in four employees understand their company's objectives and goals.
There was less trust among younger workers polled, with just 16pc of 35 to 44-year-olds fully trusting their employer.
The study also found that one in three employees claim to hear news of company change through the 'grapevine', rather than through official channels.
Employer trust was found to be highest among part-time staff with 52pc saying that they had either moderate or strong levels of trust in their employer.
Full-time staff, on the other hand, are much less likely to feel that there is open, trusted two-way communication in the company that they work for, with 23pc saying this is not the case in their job.
Regarding company goals and objectives, just 15pc of employees in larger companies have a full understanding of the company goals and their own role in achieving those goals.
This contrasts sharply with SMEs where one in three workers said that they fully understand the goals.
Alan Tyrrell, who heads corporate communications agency, PSG Plus, said that the gap in trust was the biggest issue that arose from the research.
"Creating an empowered and engaged workforce who trust their employer is not an optional extra, it's an absolute pre-requisite for sustainable success," he said.
"Sadly, this appears to be sorely missing from most workplaces and larger workplaces in particular."
Regarding different age groups, Mr Tyrrell said the finding that there was less trust in employers among younger workers could result in problems productivity, competitiveness and profitability.
To address this issue he said that employers could ensure there is informal, face-to-face contact between managers and their teams. He added: "This approach should naturally be done as part of a more strategic communications solution to improve employee engagement."
The study received 1,000 responses from employees and what PSG called a "nationally representative sample of Ireland's workforce". PSG did not say how many companies were polled for the study.