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France — Temporary employment agencies launch into the public sector

27 April 2010

The new law on 'the mobility and careers in the public sector', which came into force on 3 August 2009 and gave temporary employment agencies the right to work for public administrations has had a strong impact on the market, Le Monde reports.

In fact, local authorities and hospitals were already using temporary employment agencies but as Francois Roux, President of the Association of Temporary Employment Agencies (Prisme), points out "the legal framework was uncertain and gave rise to disputes before the Court."

The government wanted to give clear rules on the use of temporary employment agencies. Before turning to temporary employment agencies, local authorities must first find out if they cannot cover the position internally.

Staffing group Randstad France already has a subsidiary, which generates 40% of its revenues by providing temporary employees to government hospitals. Randstad also has a so-called 'public sector department' whose Managing Director, Jean-Baptiste Thiercelin, is an ex-public sector worker. Randstad equally provides teachers to secondary schools and universities.

Catherine Seguin of staffing group Adecco France, said "we have a proactive approach and we try to better understand what exactly the needs of the public sector are." Adecco has obtained several contracts from the Ministry of Justice on providing temporary employees for Public Sector Works.

The National Secretary of the CGT Union, Vincent Blouet, however, believes that "introducing private sector work contracts into the public sector creates a fundamental problem. Temporary employment in the public sector leads to the government washing its hands of responsibility."



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