PART-TIME EMPLOYMENT AS A PROMOTIONAL FACTOR OF LABOUR MARKET
Lisbon strategy of the European Union (EU) and the respective goal for sustainable EU development provides for economically and socially agreed and equal support for the entire society, including everyone individually in the economic, political and social processes through consolidating, integrating and developing the society as well as it is possible.
The labour market of Latvia has changed fast over the last ﬁve years and the employment opportunities have increased. Statistics over this period prove that the unemployment level has reduced and the employment has increased.
In recent months Latvia and other countries have been experiencing changes in the economic life. Statistical data in the labour market over the previous quarter prove it. In contrast to the above described, the unemployment level has started to grow but the employment - to reduce. There is a general understanding in the country that labour costs should be reduced. That means not only lowering salaries but also lowering other labour costs. The employers try to reduce labour costs by using part-time employment, split employment or distance employment, e.g. costs related to arranging an ofﬁce.
In general, when considering employment problems in the country, in their research the authors single out a risk group – people after the maternity leave. Taking into account the current complicated economic conditions, this risk group should be specially protected. When analyzing employee motivation, it can be concluded that salary increase is not always a motivator for this risk group. When analyzing the labour market research, it can be concluded that one of the motivation factors is social guarantees and ﬂexible work hours, especially for that risk group that returns to the labour market after the maternity leave.
The unemployment situation, which has especially intensiﬁed recently in the country, attests to the employment problems. Therefore in their research the authors study one of the potential factors promoting the labour market for people after the maternity leave – part-time employment.
The research analyzes and evaluates data of the labour market from 2006 – 2008. They comprise employment, accounting work hours and unemployment data, emphasizing gender differences. The data analyzed are about people after the maternity leave.
When analyzing part-time employment, a noticeable fact is in what way the country and the employers support the opportunity of being employed part-time. There is an issue in what form and whether at all employers could cooperate with the country to promote part-time employment. At the state level, those would be work and family balance programmes because this is a signiﬁcant factor to enhance employment – so that people would want and could work. On the part of the country it is also important to provide new parents with places in the kindergartens for their children, so that parents could return to the labour market.