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Are personnel measures effective in increasing productivity of old workers?

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  • Göbel, Christian
  • Zwick, Thomas

Abstract

In this study, we investigate the relation between five specific human resource measures for old employees (SMOE) and the relative productivity of old employees. Despite the fact that the share of old employees increases in most developed countries and many establishments apply specific measures for old employees, this is the first large scale study on this topic. We find that the relative productivity contributions of old workers are significantly higher in establishments that provide either specific equipment of work places or age-specific jobs for old workers. In establishments that apply mixed-age working teams the relative productivity contributions of old and of young employees are significantly higher than in establishments without this measure. Working time reductions and specific training for old employees are not associated with higher relative productivity of these employees. Our results suggest that the application of SMOE can contribute to the explanation for two recent findings, the only modest decline of the relative productivity contributions of old workers and the high variance for estimates of age-productivity profiles.

Suggested Citation

  • Göbel, Christian & Zwick, Thomas, 2013. "Are personnel measures effective in increasing productivity of old workers?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(C), pages 80-93.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:labeco:v:22:y:2013:i:c:p:80-93 DOI: 10.1016/j.labeco.2012.11.005
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    Cited by:

    1. Frosch, Katharina & Harhoff, Dietmar & Hoisl, Karin & Steinle, Christian & Zwick, Thomas, 2015. "Individual determinants of inventor productivity: Report and preliminary results with evidence from linked human capital and patent data," ZEW Discussion Papers 15-001, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
    2. Kampelmann, Stephan & Mahy, Benoît & Rycx, Francois & Vermeylen, Guillaume, 2016. "Who Is Your Perfect Match? Educational Norms, Educational Mismatch and Firm Profitability," IZA Discussion Papers 10399, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. François Rycx & Yves Saks & Ilan Tojerow, 2015. "Does Education Raise Productivity and Wages Equally? The Moderating Roles of Age, Gender and Industry," Working Paper Research 281, National Bank of Belgium.
    4. Matteo Picchio, 2015. "Is training effective for older workers?," IZA World of Labor, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA), pages 121-121, January.
    5. Garloff, Alfred & Wapler, Rüdiger, 2016. "Labour shortages and replacement demand in Germany : the (non)-consequences of demographic change," IAB Discussion Paper 201605, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    6. Börsch-Supan, Axel & Weiss, Matthias, 2016. "Productivity and age: Evidence from work teams at the assembly line," The Journal of the Economics of Ageing, Elsevier, vol. 7(C), pages 30-42.
    7. Maciej Lis & Iga Magda, 2014. "Dynamika płac w cyklu życia a indywidualny stan zdrowia," Gospodarka Narodowa, Warsaw School of Economics, issue 4, pages 121-142.
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    11. repec:pkk:meb017:402-412 is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Romina Giuliano & Stephan Kampelmann & Benoît Mahy & François Rycx, 2017. "Short Notice, Big Difference? The Effect of Temporary Employment on Firm Competitiveness across Sectors," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 55(2), pages 421-449, June.
    13. Broszeit, Sandra & Laible, Marie-Christine, 2017. "Examining the link between health measures, management practices and establishment performance," IAB Discussion Paper 201726, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    14. Peters, Cornelius, 2015. "Do age complementarities affect labour productivity? Evidence from German firm level data," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 112941, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    15. John S. Heywood & Uwe Jirjahn, 2016. "The hiring and employment of older workers in Germany: a comparative perspective
      [Die Beschäftigung und Neueinstellung älterer Arbeitnehmer in Deutschland: Eine vergleichende Perspektive]
      ," Journal for Labour Market Research, Springer;Institute for Employment Research/ Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), vol. 49(4), pages 349-366, December.
    16. Thomas Flochel & Yuki Ikeda & Harry Moroz & Nithin Umapathi, 2014. "Macroeconomic Implications of Aging in East Asia Pacific," World Bank Other Operational Studies 23026, The World Bank.
    17. Kerndler, Martin, 2016. "Contracting frictions and inefficient layoffs of older workers," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145711, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    18. Y. Saks, 2014. "Employees: too expensive at 50? The age component in wage-setting," Economic Review, National Bank of Belgium, issue i, pages 61-74, June.
    19. Garloff, Alfred & Wapler, Rüdiger, 2016. "Labour Shortages and Replacement Demand in Germany. The (Non-)Consequences of Demographic Change," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145497, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Age-productivity profile; Human resource management; Ageing workforce;

    JEL classification:

    • J11 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Demographic Trends, Macroeconomic Effects, and Forecasts
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure

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