Temporary employment companies are still recovering, even if their state of health has improved since the start of the health crisis. In July, they represented nearly 825,000 full-time equivalent positions, or 37,000 fewer than two years ago, according to data released Tuesday, September 14, by Prism’emploi, the employers’ organization in the sector. The interim is today at a lower level than that which prevailed before the recession triggered by the Covid-19 epidemic.
In the first quarter of 2020, companies that provide temporary workers suffered an unprecedented collapse in their activity, with a 40% drop in employment, according to INSEE. The first confinement and the shutdown of part of our economy had led thousands of bosses to separate from this category of labor. With the recovery of the economy, temporary work has regained its colors, but the recovery has been rocky since the start of the year, according to Prism’emploi: increase in January, relapse in February, further progression between March and May followed by a drop from late spring. Now, the workforce is equivalent to that of 2017 – a year “Which was not our maximum”, as Isabelle Eynaud-Chevalier, the general delegate of Prism’emploi, recalled during a press conference on Tuesday.
The evolutions are very contrasted, according to the branches. Industry and construction, which employ around “55% of temporary workers”, are down around 8.5% compared to July 2019. The trend is the same for services and trade, but to a lesser extent. Only the world of transport and logistics is doing well, with growth in these branches amounting to 11.4% in two years.
The figures for Prism’emploi are a little different from those produced by Dares – the research directorate of the Ministry of Labor. But this nevertheless led to identical findings: at the end of June, temporary employment remained “2.9% lower than the level at the end of December 2019”, she explains in a note published on September 8. These statistics attract attention, because they do not go in the same direction as those concerning private companies, taken as a whole: for them, employment exceeds by almost 86,000 the threshold it had reached at the end of 2019.
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