Labour turnover almost fivefold in 30 years: more than development of specific forms of employment, a profound change in their use

Claude Picart

While some traditional indicators of employment instability (such as employment seniority or mobility), or its insecurity(such as the share of temporary contracts), do not show significant changes since 2000 or even 1990 for mobility, other indicators based on flows, as the share of fixed-term contracts in entries or job turnover, are still clearly on the rise. Studies addressing the changing labor market in terms of flows are scarce, probably due to lack of consistent time series on this topic. This study proposes a new labour turnover indicator, built on 30 years of Labour Force Survey in France : over the last 30 years, in the private sector, mobility increased by 25 %,while the share of temporary contracts increased by 150 % and the job turnover by more than 350 %, according to the estimated indicator. This contrast between indicators based on stocks at a given date and indicators based on flows reflects a shortening of the duration of certain job spells, in particular for jobs offered by temporary employment agencies and for fixed-term contracts. It also reflects a profound change in their use by enterprises : temporary contracts are less and less a mean to transit to permanent employment and the workers concerned by these contracts are more and more likely to remain on temporary contracts, leading to recurrent situations, Worker flows are indeed increasingly concentrated on certain professions, especially the professions for which successive short term contracts for the same person are allowed by the labor law, but not only. Besides, over the 30 last years, the age criteria has become less discriminating, especially for older workers who have lost their relative protection

Documents de travail
No F1402
Paru le : 07/04/2014