More people changed jobs in 2008

28/07/2009 15:00

Between 2007 and 2008, 880 thousand people changed jobs, as against just over 600 thousand between 2004 and 2005.

Occupational mobility by age category

Job mobility by age category

Increase in occupational mobility

In total, 6.7 million people were working at least 12 hours a week in 2007 and 2008. Between 2007 and 2008, 880 thousand (13 percent) accepted new jobs, as against 600 thousand (9 percent) between 2004 and 2005. This proves that occupational mobility is highest when labour market conditions are tight.

High occupational mobility in lower occupations

The highest occupational mobility rate is recorded among people working in elementary or lower-level jobs, e.g. swimming instructors, (student) nurses and waiters. Foresters, veterinarians, doctors, pharmacists, lawyers and judges, on the other hand, are professions with a low mobility rate. Only 5 percent of them took on another profession between 2007 and 2008.

Occupational mobility by age category

Job mobility by age category

Young people most mobile

Young people tend to switch to another job more easily than older people. Between 2007 and 2008, more than one quarter of people aged between 15 and 25 changed jobs. In the age categories 25–45 and 45–65, it was 14 and 7 percent respectively. The higher mobility rate among young people is partly due to the transition from study to labour market and the high number of frequently changing small sideline jobs not exceeding more than 12 hours a week in combination with study.  After graduating, young people start looking for jobs that befits their level of education. 

Occupational mobility and change of working environment

Job mobility and change of working environment

Change of working environment

Changing jobs does not always imply a change of working environment. Sometimes employees accept another job within the same organisation. Two thirds of the 880 thousand people who changed jobs between 2007 and 2008 also changed of working environment, while the remainder did not. In recent years, changing jobs more often meant a radical break with the organisation people used to work for.

Wendy Smits and Robert de Vries