Agreement on flexible work: zero-hours contract will disappear and the self-employed must earn at least €35 per hour

Employers and trade unions have reached an agreement on limiting flexible work. That was announced on Wednesday, after de Volkskrant reported the details a day earlier.

The agreement is part of an advice drawn up in the Social and Economic Council (SER), with which employers and employees want to influence the formation.

According to the social partners, the interventions are necessary because of increasing inequality and social dissatisfaction in the Netherlands. In the SER advice they therefore insist that a new cabinet invest heavily in what they call broad prosperity. That means security of work and income, future earning capacity, strong public services and a sustainable living environment.

Also read: Emma at Work kickstarts the career of young people with a physical disability – and they are enthusiastic at Schiphol.

The top of the trade union movement and employers agree on new rules for various forms of flexible working: as an employee, through an employment agency and as a self-employed person.

The following measures, among others, are included in the agreement:

  • Temporary agency work may only exist for the replacement of sick employees – ‘peak and sick’ – and may last for a maximum of 3 years. The current collective labor agreement prescribes 5.5 years.
  • The agency clause with which an employer can terminate the collaboration with a temporary worker with immediate effect, is valid for a maximum of 12 months. That was a year and a half. Zero hour contracts where employees are only paid for the number of hours worked are disappearing. Employers must always provide security for a number of hours of work.
  • Self-employed persons must earn at least 35 euros per hour. Someone who earns less must be employed. Whether the measures are feasible remains to be seen. For example, it is difficult to maintain a minimum hourly wage, writes de Volkskrant. For example, because not every self-employed person is paid per hour, but per service provided. The agreement also contains measures to compensate for the limitation of flexible work for employers. It is also not always clear how exactly these regulations should be implemented. Read more about flexible working:
  • Work platform Maqqie turned in 5.5 times as much turnover despite corona: ‘We save companies with a flexible shell up to 25% in costs’
  • Number of flex workers shows a slightly declining trend, but that does not apply to self-employed persons
  • Just Eat Takeaway CEO Jitse Groen wants to get rid of flex workers: ‘We want to be sure that they have social insurance’
  • Loss of work often goes hand in hand with weaker health – but flex or permanent contract doesn’t matter much.
Author: Jobly