Part-time work force grows faster than full-time work force

In the second quarter of 2008, the employed labour force comprised 7.4 million people, i.e. 145 thousand more than one year ago. Employment has grown continually since the fourth quarter of 2005. The number of part-time workers rose much faster then the number of full-timers.

Growth employed labour force


Nearly 3 million part-timers

The number of part-timers stood at 2.9 million in the second quarter of this year, an increase by 107 thousand (4 percent) relative to a year ago. The number of full-timers rose by 0.8 percent to 4.5 million over the same period. Although the number of full-timers is not growing so rapidly, they still outnumber part-timers by a wide margin. 

More male and female part-timers

The growth rate for male and female part-timers was more or less the same in the past four quarters, but seven in ten women worked less than 35 hours a week, as against only 15 percent of men.

Increase in part-timers by gender


Remarkable increase in number of over-45 part-timers

The number of part-time workers in the age category 45 and older grew much faster than the number of young part-timers. In the second quarter of this year, 1.1 million over-45s were working in part-time employment, an increase by 5.3 percent compared to one year previously. Since the first quarter of 2006, annual growth in this age group has been more than 6 percent nearly every quarter. The total amount of employed over-45s also increased significantly. In the second quarter of 2008, there were 2.8 million employed persons in the over-45 age group, an increase by 4.2 percent relative to twelve months ago.

Increase in part-timers by age


Boukje Janssen