Temps feed job insecurity among regular workers

May 25, 2010 By Mary Catt

(PhysOrg.com) -- The presence of temporary workers can cause ill effects in the permanent workers with whom they work, according to ILR School research.

Job jitters go up when temporary join the workplace, ILR research shows.

Reliance on -- an increasingly popular strategy for employers -- can make regular employees feel threatened, according to research by doctoral candidate Mallika Banerjee; Pamela S. Tolbert, professor and chair of the ILR School's Department of Organizational Behavior; and Thomas J. DiCiccio, ILR professor of social statistics.

The research is based on national data gathered from thousands of workers in small to medium-sized British firms on how limited-term employees affect a variety of work attitudes among regular employees.

The researchers found that temp workers in a workplace reduce regular workers' job satisfaction and organization loyalty -- attitudes that have been linked to increased absenteeism, turnover and other negative behaviors.

"Our analysis suggests that the presence of limited-contract employees has little effect on standard employees' perceptions of work overload, but strongly, negatively affects perceived job security," Tolbert said.

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