The objective of this article is to analyse the trends in on-farm labour use, including own family labour, hired labour and contract work, and to assess the factors driving their evolution in France and in Switzerland during 1990-2007. A particular attention is given to agricultural policies, namely the level and type of support. Results indicate that crop area payments discourage the different labour demands in both countries. No other subsidies have a significant influence on labour use in Switzerland. By contrast, in France environment and investment payments favour labour use, in particular external labour (contract and hired labour).