Scarred by your employer? The effect of employers’ strategies on the career outcomes of non-standard employment

Lucille Mattijssen*, Dimitris Pavlopoulos, Wendy Smits

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In this article, we investigate how the strategies employers have for using non-standard employment – screening, workforce adaptability or cost reduction – affect the career outcomes of workers. To investigate this, we use multichannel sequence analysis to produce a typology of employment and income trajectories of workers with non-standard contracts in the Netherlands. The results show that workers starting employment in firms that use non-standard employment as a screening device are most likely to have careers with high levels of employment security. Strong scarring effects on the career are only found for workers who start employment in firms with cost reduction strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)316-344
Number of pages29
JournalWork and Occupations
Issue number3
Early online date5 Apr 2022
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research is part of the research programme ‘Non-standard employment: Prospect or precarity?’ (project number 406.16.541), which is financed by the Dutch Research Council (NWO). The authors would like to thank Statistics Netherlands for allowing us to use their data. The authors furthermore want to thank prof. Harry Ganzeboom, the members of the SILC research group and the participants of the RC28 2021 conference for their feedback on this paper.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.


  • employers’ strategies
  • human resource management
  • labor market inequality
  • multichannel sequence analysis
  • non-standard employment


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