The impact of the COVID-19 epidemic on selected elements of the labour market in Poland in the first quarter of 2020

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10.06.2020

In March 2020, a state of epidemic threat was announced in Poland, followed by a state of epidemic in connection with the spread of an infectious disease caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, called COVID-19. The solutions introduced by law, preventing and counteracting the spread of the said virus  and combating the disease caused by it applied also to the labour market. Among them was for instance the introduction of the possibility of working from outside a per-manent workplace, that is remote work. The data presented in this publication were ob-tained during  "the Survey on the demand for labour"[1] .

The Survey on the demand for labour is conducted by a representative method on a quarterly basis. It covers entities of the national economy and their local units[2] employing at least 1 person, in accordance with the subject scope of the survey. At the end of the first quarter of 2020, the number of employed persons was 3.6% lower than at the end of the first quarter of 2019. The analysis of the number of employed persons in the longer period of time indicates the occurrence of seasonal changes, however, the situation in the first quarter of 2020 indicates a disturbance of the observed trends. Since 2012, the number of employed persons was the highest in the first quarters. In 2017 and 2018, the increase in the number of employed persons in the first quarter compared to the end of the fourth quarter of the previous year reached the level of 4-5%. In subsequent quarters there was a decrease in the number of employed persons of no more than 2% of the level as at the end of the previous quarter. Hence, the situation observed in the current quarter is unusual in view of the trends observed in the second decade of the 21st century. Many causes could have contributed to this, including the spread of COVID-19.


[1] The collected data come from the voluntary responses of reporting units to four additional questions at-tached on the Reporting Portal to ‘the Survey on the demand for labour’. Half of the units that completed the reports answered the questions about the impact of the pandemic situation on the way enterprises operate.

[2] In the survey, reporting units are entities of the national economy or their local units.


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