In 2018, temporary employees aged 15-64 accounted for 13.8% of the total number of employees in this age group, slightly below the EU average of 14.1%. Women were more likely to be temporary employees than men — in Cyprus the share stood at 17.2% for women and 10.2% for men.
Releasing the EU-wide figures, Eurostat said that the share has fluctuated around 14% in recent years reaching a high of 14.3% in 2017, the highest level since 2007.
Among the EU Member States, more than 1 in 4 employees were in temporary employment in Spain (26.9%). The share of temporary employment was slightly lower in Poland (24.3%), Portugal (22.0%) and the Netherlands (21.2%).
The EU Member States with less than 5% of their employees in temporary employment in 2018 were Romania (1.1%), Lithuania (1.6%), Latvia (2.7%), Estonia (3.5%) and Bulgaria (4.0%).
In the EU as a whole, the proportion of employees in temporary employment was higher among younger employees. For those aged 15 to 24 the share was 43.3%, compared with 12.1% for those aged 25 to 54 and 6.6% for those aged 55 to 64.
The proportion of female employees aged 15 to 64 in temporary employment in the EU in 2018 was 14.7%, compared to 13.6% for men.
The source data are accessible here.
Temporary employment includes work under a fixed-term contract, as against permanent work where there is no end-date. A job may be considered temporary employment (and its holder a temporary employee) if both employer and employee agree that its end is decided by objective rules (usually written down in a work contract of limited life). These rules can be a specific date, the end of a task, or the return of another employee who has been temporarily replaced.
Typical cases are:
- people in seasonal employment;
- people engaged first by an agency or employment exchange and then hired to a third party to do a specific task (unless there is a written work contract of unlimited life);
- people with specific training contracts.