Making consistent use of the opportunities offered by flexible forms of employment
Flexible forms of employment such as temporary work, fixed-term contracts, part-time work and mini-jobs have made a decisive contribution to the strong increase in employment in recent years. They are indispensable components of a balanced overall package for more labour market dynamism as a whole. In many cases, they make it easier to get into work and offer new employment prospects, especially for the low-skilled and the long-term unemployed.
The complaint about the alleged decline of the so-called "normal employment relationship" is false and misleading. It obscures the view of the great successes achieved in recent years at
Flexible forms of employment create additional opportunities
Flexible forms of employment are above all an expression of increased flexibility requirements in companies. The result of greater regulation would not be more "normal employment relationships", but fewer employment opportunities for all. Flexible forms of employment - above all temporary work - often prove to be a stepping stone to employment, especially for people who have a hard time on the labour market: From May 2018 to April 2019, according to the Federal Employment Agency, every sixth unemployed person who took up employment subject to social security contributions found it in temporary employment. For people who were previously long-term unemployed or had never been employed, as many as one in four took up employment in temporary work.
Do not stigmatise flexible forms of employment as "atypical
It is absurd and defamatory to describe flexible forms of employment as "atypical" or even "precarious". This is intended to create the impression that flexible forms of employment do not in principle provide sufficient income. This is unjustified for various reasons: Fixed-term employment or temporary employment relationships in particular also include demanding activities that are well remunerated and improve the employment prospects of many people. Fixed-term employment relationships are prohibited from being treated less favourably than permanent employees. In the case of mini-jobs, which are limited to a monthly wage of €450, or also in the case of part-time employment with a (often freely chosen) low number of hours, it is in the nature of things that an income from work that covers needs cannot be achieved with this. People who are only marginally employed often have other sources of income or are not looking to work in the primary labour market: over 40% of mini-jobbers are pupils, students and pensioners. Over 35 % are housewives and men who supplement their partner's income with their mini-job. In addition to the collective agreements in the temporary employment sector, which apply to almost 100% of the employment relationships in temporary employment, there are now supplementary collective agreements in twelve sectors which ensure appropriate remuneration. The lower wage limit under the Temporary Employment Act additionally stabilizes the entire industry.
Mini-jobs are more flexible and easier to handle than employment relationships subject to social security contributions, as mini-jobs involve less administrative work. The employer only has to register and account for a mini-job at
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Facts and figures
Theso-called normal employment relationship is on the advance - flexible employment remains constant
This is the percentage of 15-64 year olds in the respective forms of employment (Source: Federal Statistical Office, 2020; Eurostat, 2020, own calculations)