The employed labour force in the Netherlands included an average 156 thousand temp agency workers in 2009, 41 thousand fewer than in the previous year. This was the largest year-on-year decrease since 1996. The largest drop was in the manufacturing industry.
One in five workers employed via temp agencies
The decrease in the number of temp workers started in the autumn of 2007. In that year agency workers accounted for 2.9 percent of the employed labour force on average. In 2009 this had fallen to 2.1 percent.
Temp agency workers in the employed labour force (15 to 64 years)
Fewer agency workers in manufacturing, business services and transport
The lower number of agency workers hired in the manufacturing industry, business services and transport and storage accounted for three-quarters of the 41 thousand decrease from 2008 to 2009. Manufacturing companies employed most temp agency workers in 2008, and the demand for this flexible labour supply dropped sharply. In 2009, 40 percent fewer temp agency workers were hired in the manufacturing industry than in 2008. The decrease in other sectors was significantly smaller.
Temp agency workers in the employed labour force (15 to 64 years): where they work
More agency workers became unemployed
One in five agency workers had a different place of employment three months later in 2009. Half of them had a job with a permanent contract. One in five were no longer in the employed labour force three months later. The number becoming unemployed grew particularly fast after 2007. Five percent of all temp agency workers became unemployed in 2007, in 2009 this had risen to 9 percent. The percentage of agency workers who were still working in the same job three months later remained constant between 2007 and 2009.
Temp agency workers in the employed labour force by their position 3 months later