Published: 16.09.2019
Author:Anatoliy Zymnin
Anatoliy Zymnin

A report by EWL S.A. ‘Ukrainians on the Polish labour market: experiences, challenges and perspectives’ (2019 edition)

Raport EWL S.A.

The citizens of Ukraine are working in Poland for longer and longer, and their income expectations are increasing. This is evidenced by the results of the sociological study ‘Ukrainians on the Polish labour market: experiences, challenges and perspectives’ conducted by EWL S.A. and the Centre for East European Studies at the University of Warsaw.

Whereas in 2018 the largest group of Ukrainian employees on the Polish market (more than 40%) were applying for the lowest hourly rate (PLN 9-11), then in 2019 only 6% of Ukrainian citizens would agree to work for such remuneration. The group of employees wishing to earn between PLN 13-15 net per hour (33%) has doubled, and the share of respondents expecting to earn between PLN 15-20 net per hour has almost tripled, amounting to 19%.

According to the collected data, the largest group (over 36%) are employees from Ukraine, who during their entire stay in Poland plan to earn from 5 to 10 thousand zlotys (after deducting the costs of living and travel). There are 27% Ukrainian citizens who came to earn between PLN 3,000 and 5,000. Every eighth respondent declared plans to earn between PLN 10,000 and 30,000.

The study also shows that work in Poland is no longer treated as a new phenomenon among our eastern neighbours. If in 2018 almost two thirds of the Ukrainian employees surveyed worked in our country for the first time, then in 2019 the percentage of people without experience on the Polish labour market decreased to 49%.

The period of employment of Ukrainian workers in Poland is longer. If last year over 54% of the respondents declared that during their last stay they had worked in our country for less than 3 months, then in 2019 the length of employment of more than half of the respondents was between 3 and 6 months.

‘The results confirm that Ukrainians have a constant desire to return to our country to take up or continue employment. Polish employers should also be satisfied with the growing interest in taking up long-term employment.’

said Renata Ostrowska, Deputy Sales Director of EWL S.A. during the presentation of the report.

Moreover, the number of Ukrainian citizens working in Poland who would like to move to our country permanently increased by one third.

If in 2018 22% of employees from Ukraine were willing to live permanently in Poland, this year it was 33%. Every fifth Ukrainian citizen working in Poland (22%) would like to live in our country for several years.

The study shows that the reason for moving to Poland may be primarily a higher quality of life in our country – this is the opinion of 46% of the respondents. Higher earnings than in Ukraine are an argument for every third Ukrainian, and over 36% of those surveyed were convinced to migration by a better perspective for their children. The majority of the participants of the study (52%) confirmed the impact of the acceleration of the procedure of obtaining a permanent residence permit on their decision to stay in Poland.

According to the report, 27% of Ukrainian citizens working in Poland are considering to have their own business in our country. Entrepreneurial Ukrainians most often choose industries such as services and trade for their potential business – 22% each (among those who plan their own business). Almost three times fewer respondents would open their own business in culture and entertainment, agriculture, logistics, transport and warehousing, construction, hotels and catering sectors.

More than 38% of the respondents state that they count on receiving a Polish pension, while at the same time almost as many (37%) do not count on this type of benefit. In turn, 27% of the respondents plan to live in Poland after reaching retirement age, while 37% do not.

According to the collected data, almost 39% of Ukrainian citizens working in Poland plan to bring their families to Poland. In addition, almost two thirds of those surveyed would like their children to study here, and nearly 45% would like their children to live permanently in our country.

The authors of the study also stress that Ukrainians are increasingly willing to integrate with Polish citizens, which translates into a positive increase in social relations. Nearly 50% of the respondents declared that they had made friends or acquaintances with Poles (an increase of 1/3 compared to last year).

‘The results of this report show an image of an employee more professionally experienced, demanding, aware of their needs and role on the Polish labour market who is considering continuing their professional career in Poland in the long term.’

comments Andrzej Korkus, CEO of EWL S.A.

The sociological study was conducted from 17 April to 31 May 2019 by EWL S.A. and Centre for East European Studies at the University of Warsaw. 855 Ukrainian citizens working in Poland were interviewed directly.

Download the report

Anatoliy Zymnin