Part-time workers should work longer hours to fight staff shortages: employers
Employers want to solve the staff shortages in many sectors in the Netherlands by making part-time workers work more hours, according to a memorandum from employers' associations AWVN, MKB-Nederland, and VNO-NCW, the Telegraaf reports.
"People who now work part-time simply have to work more. Not only mothers, but also fathers," Harry van de Kraats, director of the AWVN, said in an interview with the newspaper. "I am for less part-time, but for flexibility. Suppose you both work 40 hours, I think people should be given the space to start later, so that they can bring the children to school. Or that they can work at home from half past three. The facilitation of how someone works must be more modern."
The Netherlands' work force is split nearly 50/50 when it comes to full-time and part-time workers. Some 4.6 million people in the country work full-time, and some 4.4 million are part-timers.
Van de Kraats is worried that the staff shortages will cause a dichotomy to arise on the labor market. "If we don't watch out, that will happen," he said to the Telegraaf. "What I encounter a lot in certain sectors is that there is competition based on the price of labor. And that has to do with the fact that in some sectors there is no scarcity. That is because these companies can attract international forces, or there is work for which many people present themselves. You see excesses happening there, and I think that's really bad."
He believes the excesses on the labor market are the result of increased mobility. "A lot of mobility has entered the labor market, also from a European perspective. That has had an impact. For example, there are employment agencies that get people from Poland. And of course there is little scarcity within those sectors, while margins are low. Many companies in those sectors face fierce competition in the market where they operate. Then you see that the share of labor in their work processes is large. And then you also see that if there is no scarcity, there will be pressure on the price of labor."