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Employment Trial Periods Positive Impact

( Minister of Labour Kate Wilkinson has welcomed new research showing trial periods had a positive impact on job numbers for small employers at a time of rising unemployment.

The analysis by the New Zealand Institute of Economic Research looked at the impact of the trial period over the six month period following its introduction in March 2009.

“Unemployment peaked at 7.1 percent that year and considering the economic conditions small businesses were operating under, the indication that hiring was almost six percentage points higher than expected is extremely good.

“Total job numbers for these firms were also higher, by about two percent,” Ms Wilkinson says.

“Trial periods are a policy of opportunity and it’s pleasing to see this early data showing small businesses have utilised them effectively.

“It certainly puts into perspective the shameful opposition of Labour and the unions to these jobs being available for workers.

“With the extension of the trial period due to take effect on April 1, I would expect to see increased hiring through larger employers also.

“Employers have already shown they are more willing to take a chance on someone they otherwise wouldn’t and this is where a trial period is valuable.

“It’s still early days for this policy and eventually there will be more data to analyse its effectiveness. I’m confident the benefits to New Zealand will be obvious, just as they have to the rest of the developed economies in the world that apply a grievance-free period.”

Media Release 2 February 2011 from Kate Wilkinson, Minister of Labour.



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