World Employment and Social Outlook: The Changing Nature of Jobs
This report reveals a shift away from the standard employment model, in which workers earn wages and salaries in a dependent employment relationship vis-à-vis their employers, have stable jobs and work full time. In advanced economies, the standard employment model is less and less dominant.
In emerging and developing economies, there has been some strengthening of employment contracts and relationships but informal employment continues to be common in many countries and, at the bottom of global supply chains, very short-term contracts and irregular hours are becoming more widespread (see Chapters 1 and 5 of this volume).
Today, wage and salaried employment accounts for only about half of global employment and covers as few as 20 per cent of workers in regions such as sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia.
In a number of advanced economies, the incidence of wage and salaried employment has been on a downward trend, thus departing from historical patterns. Conversely, own-account work and other forms of employment outside the scope of the traditional employer–employee arrangement are on the rise. In emerging and developing economies, the historical trend towards more wage and
salaried employment is slowing down. The incidence of jobs in the informal economy and unpaid family work remain stubbornly high in most developing countries.
In addition, within the pool of wage and salaried workers, new dynamics are emerging (figure 1).
Fewer than 45 per cent of wage and salaried workers are employed on a full-time, permanent basis and even that share appears to be declining. This means that nearly six out of ten wage and salaried workers worldwide are in either part-time or temporary forms of wage and salaried employment.
Women are disproportionately represented among those in temporary and part-time forms of wage and salaried employment.
In short, the standard employment model is less and less representative of today’s world of work since fewer than one in four workers is employed in conditions corresponding to that model.