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Social climate

Serene social climate contributes to competitiveness

Source : National Social Security Office

A country’s social climate can be gauged by different indicators such as rates of absenteeism, the number of days lost to strikes, employee satisfaction levels and workforce retention.  

Over the period 2007-2017, the whole of the chemicals, plastics and life sciences sector recorded an average of 21,448 strike days per year, equivalent to 0.24 of a day per year per employee (compared to 0.25 day per year for the manufacturing industry as whole).

According to a recent study by human resources specialist Securex (2019), there was a relatively high absenteeism rate among blue-collar workers in the chemicals, plastics and life sciences sector in 2018 (1.6 sickness notifications per blue-collar worker compared with an average of 1.1 for all Belgian employees). This difference has remained fairly constant in recent years. Absenteeism among the sector’s white-collar workforce is similar to levels in the rest of the economy.

The Securex study of staff turnover confirms that employees in the sector have a high degree of company loyalty: only 2.9% of employees in the industry left their company voluntarily in 2018, compared with an average of 5.8% across the private sector as a whole.

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