Labour unions, by many scholars seen as the manifestation of class solidarity or unity, have lost their strongholds in the traditional blue-collar sectors and have failed to recover these losses with membership gains in the growth sectors of the economy. In the Netherlands most people who become a member of a union join the organisation within five years after they have entered the labour market. Whether individuals entering the labour market actually do become a union member depends on the presence and presentation of the union in the company they enter and on the industrial relations climate in that company. The working class has always been subdivided in smaller subsets of solidary members who share an additional identifier, be it a company, a department, a profession or occupation, a community, or membership in a specific union. The strategy of counting on identification with the company has serious drawbacks as well.