IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Motives for accepting temporary employment: a typology


  • Jeroen de Jong
  • Nele De Cuyper
  • Hans De Witte
  • Inmaculada Silla
  • Claudia Bernhard-Oettel


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.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeroen de Jong & Nele De Cuyper & Hans De Witte & Inmaculada Silla & Claudia Bernhard-Oettel, 2009. "Motives for accepting temporary employment: a typology," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 30(3), pages 237-252, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:30:y:2009:i:3:p:237-252

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: Access to full text is restricted to subscribers

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Chris Dawson & Michail Veliziotis & Gail Pacheco & Don J Webber, 2014. "Is temporary employment a cause or consequence of poor mental health?," Working Papers 20141409, Department of Accounting, Economics and Finance, Bristol Business School, University of the West of England, Bristol.
    2. Sílvia Lopes & Maria Chambel, 2014. "Motives for Being Temporary Agency Worker: Validity Study of One Measure According to The Self-Determination Theory," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 116(1), pages 137-152, March.
    3. Cheryl Carleton & Mary Kelly, 2016. "Alternative Work Arrangements and Job Satisfaction," Villanova School of Business Department of Economics and Statistics Working Paper Series 32, Villanova School of Business Department of Economics and Statistics.
    4. Carlo Gianelle & Giuseppe Tattara, 2014. "Vacancy chains and the business cycle. Stringing together job-to-job transitions in micro data," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 35(8), pages 1212-1235, October.
    5. Dawson, Chris & Veliziotis, Michail & Pacheco, Gail & Webber, Don J., 2015. "Is temporary employment a cause or consequence of poor mental health? A panel data analysis," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 50-58.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eme:ijmpps:v:30:y:2009:i:3:p:237-252. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Virginia Chapman). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.