Motives for accepting temporary employment: a typology
Jeroen de Jong
Nele De Cuyper
Hans De Witte
Purpose – This paper aims to offer a typology of temporary workers, based on their motives for accepting their work arrangement, which includes voluntary, involuntary and stepping-stone motives, and relate this typology to various individual and work-related variables. Design/methodology/approach – Latent class analysis of 645 European workers was used to construct a typology of temporary workers. Variation of individual and work-related variables between types of temporary workers was analyzed using ANOVA. Findings – The analyses suggest that there are three types of workers: involuntary temporary workers highlight the involuntary motive and the stepping-stone motive; the stepping-stone type stresses the stepping-stone motive only, and the non-involuntary group disagrees with all three motives. Moreover, the groups differed significantly on important work-related variables such as occupational position, tenure, employability, and work-involvement. However, differences in individual variables were limited. Research limitations/implications – The research puts forward a more complex typology of temporary workers than is usually suggested. Moreover, the study shows a non-involuntary group for which temporary employment can become a trap, and hence these workers should be targeted by future policy and interventions. Originality/value – The research offers a typology of temporary workers, which is founded on motivation theory, and existing research on motives for accepting temporary employment.
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