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The new figures reverse the decline of the first eight months of last year.
These statistics were released by the Adcorp Employment Index on Thursday – conducted by Adcorp Holdings and analysed by independent contributors.
Temporary jobs increased by 9‚074 in the month of December, 2012.
However, permanent jobs declined by 5,542 in the same period.
Employment increased in all sectors except mining and manufacturing.
The unofficial sector – that part of the economy that was not captured by official statistics – grew strongly, creating 9,024 jobs.
The strongest employment growth was observed in transport which stood at 12.7 per cent , wholesale and retail trade 3.4 per cent and construction 4.7 per cent.
Adcorp revealed that from 2000 to 2012, the number of permanent jobs declined by 1.9 million, whereas the number of temporary jobs increased by 2.6 million.
“Currently temporary jobs account for 30.5% of all jobs in South Africa, up from 11% in 2000,” said Adcorp’s labour market analyst Loane Sharp.
Sharp described the decrease in permanent jobs and increase in temporary jobs as “a striking feature” of South Africa’s labour market.
“In other words, all of the growth in jobs over the past decade has been of a temporary nature,” he said.
Permanent work has not yet begun to increase since the 2009 recession, whereas the recession is hardly evident in the secular increase in temporary work, Sharp said.
“In circumstances of variable and unpredictable sales volumes, employers are able to match their labour input to output levels by utilising temporary workers.
“The growing effect of seasonality on output levels in agriculture, retail trade, tourism, catering, logistics and other sectors has increased the use of temporary workers in these sectors,” he said.
Increasingly employers view labour costs – such as employee administration and other human resource practices – as “non-core” activities, preferring to outsource these activities to specialised third parties.