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24.06.2020 – 09:00

swissstaffing - Verband der Personaldienstleister der Schweiz

Flexworkers are the subject of a new study

Flexworkers are the subject of a new study
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Digitalization, automation and globalization are changing the way we work. In this dynamic labor market, flexible forms of working are constantly on the rise, and workers are discovering they have new needs that had previously not been given much thought. A joint research study by HR ConScience, the University of Lucerne and swissstaffing is the first to have analyzed flexworkers' motives for wanting to work in this way as well as the opportunities and challenges associated with this type of work. The main motives behind opting for flexwork are linked to the good work-life balance it affords flexworkers. What's more, the autonomy and sense of fulfillment gained through this type of work is important to them. As with every type of work, financial motives play a role here too.

The opportunities and challenges of flexwork

As the two authors of the study, Dr. Anja Feierabend and Dr. Lea Rutishauser, explain, there is a very fine line between the opportunities and challenges of flexwork: a high level of flexibility and autonomy also requires a high level of responsibility. Flexwork enables workers to perfectly combine their career, family and leisure goals. However, this also means that flexworkers have to avoid making themselves overly available and must often also take on responsibility for the entire added-value chain (finding work, completing the job, handling the accounting, etc.). From a financial viewpoint, flexwork can provide workers with the opportunity they need to enter or re-enter the labor market or to pursue a side career. However, fluctuating and sometimes unpredictable order volumes can also lead to financial insecurity at times. Through regular interaction with employers, flexworkers are able to receive direct feedback, which they can then use to evaluate their performance and further develop their skills.

Flexwork is a reality

Flexwork is a reality in Switzerland, not just a phenomenon occurring on the periphery. According to figures from the Federal Statistical Office (2019), 46 percent of the Swiss working population have flexible working hours, 33 percent work from home, and 23 percent have flexible employment contracts. There is an ever-increasing amount of freedom when it comes to working hours, places of work and contractual relationships with employers. This has been made abundantly clear recently with the major shift towards digitalization and increased flexibility in the Swiss labor market in the wake of the coronavirus crisis.

Flexwork needs acceptance

In the view of Myra Fischer-Rosinger, Director of swissstaffing, the growing trend toward flexwork - which is also highlighted in the study - requires three things: "A culture in which flexible work and the dynamic interaction between different types of work are accepted; good recruiters who promote flexworkers to employers, for example, staff leasing companies, digital platforms and labor associations; and an updated framework for labor and social security laws that would make the most of this increased flexibility and make the liberal labor market even more inclusive."

The full white paper "Flexworker - Their motives, aims and needs" can be downloaded at

Flexworker livestream event on 06/24/2020 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., live from the Kursaal in Bern Alongside guest speakers from the fields of politics, economics and science, swissstaffing will be discussing the increased flexibility in the labor market and its opportunities and risks for employees, businesses and wider society. Watch the livestream:


Myra Fischer-Rosinger, Director
Tel.: 044 388 95 40,

Dr. Marius Osterfeld, economist
Tel.: 044 388 95 70 / 079 930 45 25,

HR ConScience study authors:
Dr. Anja Feierabend and Dr. Lea Rutishauser
Tel.: 044 500 23 41,

Blandina Werren, Head of Communications
Tel.: 044 388 95 35,

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