Job satisfaction and mental health of temporary agency workers in Europe: a systematic review and research agenda

The current systematic literature review aimed to analyse the associations between temporary agency work (TAW), job satisfaction, and mental health in Europe, as well as to outline a future research agenda. Twenty-eight scientific articles were identified by searching different data bases for the time span from January 2000 to December 2016. Our review reveals first that TAW is not consistently negatively related to job satisfaction. However, job insecurity and working conditions are important mediators in the relation of TAW and lowered job satisfaction. Second, TAW is not consistently related to all investigated types of mental health impairments. However, when focusing on specific outcomes and comparing temporary agency workers to permanent employees, we still find consistent evidence regarding higher levels of depression and fatigue among temporary agency workers. Inconsistent associations between TAW, job satisfaction and mental health can partly be attributed to unfavourable methodological aspects of the included primary studies. To address these aspects, future research should consider applying a standard measurement of TAW, including a minimum of meaningful confounding variables, improving the operationalisation of outcome variables and the study design.


Author(s) L. Hünefeld, S. Gerstenberg, J. Hüffmeier
Language English
Year of publication Jan, 2019
Journal Work & Stress
Volume, Number 2019, 1
Page(s) 1-29
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