On-call work


Mostly found in the sales or restaurant industries, on-call work is popular with some companies. The employer offers assignments to the worker, which the latter is free to accept or not. In principle, the employer does not make any commitment as to the duration and schedule of the work.

When the employer does not need the services of the on-call worker, he often does not call him at all or very little. Given the precariousness of this type of work, the Federal Court has set limits.

Fluctuating workloads

In the context of on-call work, the employee does not know how many hours he or she will work each week, nor what salary he or she will receive, because the volume of work varies according to the company's needs.

Is this fluctuation lawful? Does the employer have to commit to a minimum number of hours per month or per week?

Waiting time

Between each mission, the employee must sometimes be at the employer's disposal while waiting for the call. Should the employee be compensated for this waiting time?

Time off

When business slows down, the employer sometimes has no more work to assign to on-call workers. However, the employer must respect their time off. Can the employer abruptly decide not to call them anymore or to assign them fewer hours than usual? Does the employer have the right to terminate the employment contract of its on-call workers and immediately stop calling on them?

Illness and Accident

An on-call worker breaks his leg or gets the flu. Does the employer have to pay his salary during his incapacity to work or can he call in other employees? How is this pay calculated?


The on-call employee is entitled to vacation. However, the calculation of the vacation days to be granted to the on-call employee can be difficult, since his working time can vary greatly throughout the year. A solution has been put in place by the jurisprudence in order to facilitate the calculation of the vacation entitlement of these particular employees. 

Top Articles

1 Mar, 2010 byMarianne Favre Moreillon