Job insecurity among fixed term contract workers, temporary
agency workers and permanent workers: Associations with
Nele De Cuyper & Hans De Witte
Recent studies in the realm of temporary employment have established that job insecurity does
not contribute in explaining attitudes among temporary workers, while it is highly predictive for
permanent workers’ attitudes. Specifically, job insecurity reduces job satisfaction and
organizational commitment among permanent workers, however not among temporary workers.
In this respect, most studies have concerned comparisons between permanent workers and direct-
hire fixed term contract workers. It is the intent of this study to investigate whether the
interaction effect between contract type and job insecurity could be generalized to temporary
agency workers. SEM (Npermanent = 352; Nfixed term = 167; Nagency = 106) suggest that job insecurity
is negatively related to job satisfaction and organizational commitment among permanent
workers and temporary agency workers, however not among fixed term contract workers.
Possibly, unlike fixed term contract workers, both permanent workers and temporary agency
workers may perceive job insecurity as a breach of the psychological contract with their
respective employers (i.e. the agency in case of temporary agency workers).