Part-time or shift work has now become the norm in the Greek labor market, accounting for six out of every 10 new jobs created last month, according to Labor Ministry figures that reveal unprecedented changes in the features of employment in Greece.
The main victims of those changes are workers who have seen their incomes shrink, as flexible labor has largely replaced full-time employment during the crisis years. Data show that 61.1 percent of hirings in September concerned part-time jobs or rotational work with pay below the minimum wage (586 euros per month or 511 euros for under-25s), against 38.9 percent full-time positions. Out of the 140,878 hirings made last month that involved flexible hours, 107,790 were part-time and 33,088 comprised shift work.
Former labor minister Giorgos Koutroumanis told Kathimerini that besides the social consequences, this new problem also has economic repercussions, as it leads to lower revenues for the social security system. In many cases, part-time workers declare that they work four hours for five days per week while in fact working much longer without the state receiving the tax and social contributions due, Koutroumanis notes.
The ministry’s Ergani hirings register recorded 7,788 more hirings than departures in September, as hirings numbered 230,580, up 54,626 from last year, while departures came to 222,792, up 33,835 from September 2015. A total of 245,605 jobs were created in the first nine months of the year, but flexible forms of labor accounted for 53.38 percent of hirings.
Manpower Organization (OAED) figures showed on Wednesday that the registered unemployed shrank by 28,847 people in September from August. Out of the 871,981 people registered as jobless, 54.95 percent have been out of work for over a year.
Greece’s employment rate rose to 52.2 percent in the second quarter of the year from 51.7 percent in the first, according to the Quarterly Employment Situation report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) issued on Wednesday. This is the second lowest rate among OECD members, after Turkey’s 50.8 percent.