Talent Monitor: Zzp'ers: protect or set free?

We believe that exploitation in the labor market must be countered with appropriate measures, while at the same time not ignoring the large group of self-employed people who consciously choose to do business in complete freedom and have control over their own work. With the insights in this report, we hope to make a new contribution to this.

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Only tens of thousands of 1.2 million self-employed work for hourly rate below 20 euros

Zzp'ers working as store assistants, childcare workers, teaching assistants, waiters or bartenders work on average at the lowest hourly rates in the Netherlands. They also have a relatively low scarcity indication, which predicts that the prospect of rate increases is limited. On the other hand, relatively few self-employed workers are active in these occupational groups, compared to the total of nearly 1.2 million. These insights were published in the Talent Monitor by HR service provider HeadFirst Group and labor market data specialist Intelligence Group.

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Main observations

  • Self-employed people with an hourly rate of €35 or lower work mainly as domestic help and cleaners, waiters and bar staff or childcare and teaching assistants.
  • In particular, the occupational groups of child care and teaching assistants and domestic helpers and cleaners seem to be the needy target groups based on the hourly rate and the prospect of rate increases.
  • Specialists in the field of sports and fitness and authors, journalists and linguists can largely be found in the €36 to €70 rate group.
  • Zzp'ers with an hourly rate of €70 or higher are overrepresented in professional groups such as lawyers, software and application developers and analysts, and doctors.
  • At 28%, self-employed persons with an hourly rate of €35 or lower are slightly more actively looking for a (new) assignment than self-employed persons in the other two rate groups. The part that is not actively looking, but is keeping an eye on the market, at 49%, is actually smaller than the other two rate groups.
  • Zzpp'ers with a lower hourly rate are more willing to go into paid employment (again) (18%). For self-employed people with an hourly rate of €70 or higher, that percentage is slightly lower, at 16%. For self-employed people with an hourly rate between €36 and €70, it stalls at 11%.
  • Zzp'ers with an hourly rate of €70 or higher are approached most often by clients and intermediary agencies. Their sourcing pressure, the percentage who are approached at least once per quarter, is 67%. For freelancers with an hourly rate of €35 or lower, it is 63% and for freelancers with an intermediate hourly rate 61%.
  • Zzpp'ers with an hourly rate of €35 or lower are less willing to travel far for an assignment. Half of the self-employed with an hourly rate of €70 or higher are willing to travel longer than an hour, compared with 37% of self-employed with an hourly rate of €35 or lower.


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