Numerical flexibility is commonly promoted as a driver of employment growth. However, contingent work is frequently associated with 'bad jobs', particularly for those in low skilled occupations. Agency work is a common and growing form of contingent work and is often promoted as a tool for facilitating the labour market integration of young workers. In France, young agency workers make up a significant part of the labour force within car assembly plants. Studies have shown that these workers have harsher working conditions than permanent co-workers and are subject to a 'despotic' factory regime. However, the triangular relationship, which frames the agency contract, may give rise to a more complex outcome in which the aspiration for stable employment mediates the coercion of labour market vulnerability.
agency work factory regimes auto sector agency autoworkers hegemonic despotism unions labour process Burawoy