Job stability has increased over the past decade according to surprising new research by the International Labour Organisation.
The ILO's World Employment Report 2001, found that the average length of job tenure has risen during the past decade, contradicting the perception that labour markets are becoming increasingly fluid.
Between 1992 and 1998 the average tenure for jobs in the selection of European countries surveyed increased from 10.2 years to 10.5 years.
The report states, "The theory that labour markets in the digital era are undergoing profound transformation has some basis in truth. For most people in work, however, there continues to be a surprisingly high degree of employment stability. In 12 out of 16 OECD countries' labour markets examined in this report, job tenure - a measure of employment stability ñ has either remained unchanged during the last decade of the 1990s or has in fact increased.
"Even looking more closely at some of the occupations most associated with the new economy, such as telecommunications workers or those in the distribution sector, job tenure has remained largely unchanged."
The report shows that policy makers, senior managers and those working in public administration had the longest period of job tenure with lower skilled white-collar professions staying in jobs for the shortest amount of time.
It concludes, "The popular view that most employment relationships are of a temporary nature and longer-term employment relationships between companies and their workers is a thing of the past cannot be confirmed.
"Our results do not point to a broken bond between workers and their firms. Rather, they suggest segmented labour markets in which the core is still the dominant form of employment while the periphery, which has grown, constitutes a marginal form of employment."
By Ben Willmott