Increase in temporary contracts with prospect of permanent appointment

02/08/2011 15:00

More and more employees in the Netherlands have a temporary employment contract that offers the likelihood of a permanent appointment. Most of them are younger employees. In the fast growing care sector, in particular, the number of workers with such a contract has risen considerably in the last 15 years.

Six percent of temporary employees have prospect of permanent contract

There were more than 6.3 million employees in the Netherlands in 2010. By far most of them, 85 percent, had a permanent contract with fixed working hours. Another 6 percent had a temporary contract with the prospect of a permanent appointment. This percentage has doubled since 1996.

The remaining 9 percent of employees were flex workers, such as agency and standby workers. This percentage varies according to developments in the economy, and was between 7 and 10 percent from 1996 to 2010.

Employees by type of contract

Employees by type of contract

More and more 35-54 year-olds

Temporary contracts with the likelihood of a permanent appointment are often seen as a sort of probationary period. Indeed it is often young workers who have these contracts. Six out of ten of employees with such a contract in 2010 were younger than 35, compared with three in ten who had a permanent contract.

The percentage of 35-54 year-olds with a temporary contract and the prospect of a permanent appointment has risen substantially since 1996, however: from 18 percent to 37 percent.

Employees with permanent contract for fixed working hours1) and with temporary contract and prospect of permanent contract, by age

Employees with permanent contract for fixed working hours1) and with temporary contract and prospect of permanent contract, by age

Increase mainly in care

The number of employees with a temporary contract and a prospect of permanent contract increased in the health care and welfare sector in particular. This sector has grown strongly in recent years. Nearly one in five employees with a temporary contract with the prospects of a permanent contract worked in the care sector in 2009. In 1996 the largest group of employees with these contracts was in trade.

Employees with temporary contract and prospect of permanent contract, by main sectors of industry

Employees with temporary contract and prospect of permanent contract, by main sectors of industry

Lian Kösters