Tuesday 17 September 2019

Most agency workers are women who work full-time - new report

Stock photo
Stock photo

Anne-Marie Walsh

MOST workers employed by agencies are women who work full-time and almost half have third level degrees.

New figures show that women make up 52pc of the country’s 50,400 staff who work for agencies, while 48pc are men.

In other words, 26,200 women work for agencies compared with 24,200 men.

This compares with an even split of 50pc for men and women among all employees working in the state.

It is also a reversal of the balance of the genders among this category of workers back in 2017 when 51pc were men, compared with under 49pc of women.

But agency staff make up a tiny portion of the overall workforce of over two million people and their numbers fell by 11pc in the 12 months to the end of last March.

Employees classified as agency staff represented just 2.6pc of the total workforce in the first three months of this year compared with slightly over 3pc at the same time last year.

There are 50,400 agency staff compared with 1.9 million employees who do not work for agencies.

Men accounted for almost 60pc of the fall of 6,200 in the number of agency workers in the year to last March.

However, while the number of agency staff fell by 11pc, the number of non-agency workers rose by over 6pc.

The new Central Statistics Office figures also reveal that agency workers are most likely to work in agriculture, forestry, fishing, industry, construction and health and social work.

Six out of ten of them worked less than 40 hours a week – although this is lower than the portion who work less than 40 hours out of all employees.

The data also shows that a quarter of agency workers are non-Irish nationals, and over a third are described as ‘associate professionals and higher occupation groups’.

Just over two fifths, or 43pc, were between 15 and 34 years of age – up from just under 40pc last year.

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