Paul van Gerven
16 September

FME urges the Dutch government to make preparations for the so-called ‘deeltijd-WW’, an arrangement used during the 2008-2009 crisis to protect tech jobs. The industry association fears without it a new recession would do more damage than necessary. Recent signs point to a possible economic downturn in the near future.

During deeltijd-WW, employees temporarily work part-time, with their loss of income compensated for by benefits. Proponents believe this keeps the number of lay-offs in check and helps retain valuable skills and knowledge for the company, which may be difficult to re-acquire once markets recover.

According to newspaper Het Financieele Dagblad, many politicians are less than enthusiastic about deeltijd-WW after an independent evaluation showed no significant differences in behavior and outcome between companies that did and did not participate. However, the daily quotes a labor market expert as saying that similar arrangements have yielded positive results in other countries.