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Providing Advice to Job Seekers at Low Cost: An Experimental Study on On-Line Advice

Author

Listed:
  • Michèle Belot
  • Philipp Kircher
  • Paul Muller

Abstract

Helping job seekers to identify suitable jobs is a key challenge for policy makers. We develop and evaluate experimentally a novel tool that provides tailored advice at low cost and thereby redesigns the process through which job seekers search for jobs. We invited 300 job seekers to our computer facilities for 12 consecutive weekly sessions. They searched for real jobs using our web interface. After 3 weeks, we introduced a manipulation of the interface for half of the sample: instead of relying on their own search criteria, we displayed relevant other occupations to them and the jobs that were available in these occupations. These suggestions were based on background information and readily available labor market data. We recorded search behavior on our site but also surveyed participants every week on their other search activities, applications and job interviews. We find that these suggestions broaden the set of jobs considered by the average participant. More importantly, we find that they are invited to significantly more job interviews. These effects are predominantly driven by job seekers who searched relatively narrowly initially and who have been unemployed for a few months.

Suggested Citation

  • Michèle Belot & Philipp Kircher & Paul Muller, 2015. "Providing Advice to Job Seekers at Low Cost: An Experimental Study on On-Line Advice," CESifo Working Paper Series 5641, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_5641
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Manudeep Bhuller & Andreas R. Kostol & Trond C. Vigtel, 2019. "How Broadband Internet Affects Labor Market Matching," CESifo Working Paper Series 8022, CESifo Group Munich.
    2. Girum Abebe & Stefano Caria & Marcel Fafchamps & Paolo Falco & Simon Franklin & Simon Quinn, 2017. "Anonymity or Distance? Job Search and Labour Market Exclusion in a Growing African City," SERC Discussion Papers 0224, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    3. Philipp Kircher & Paul Muller & Michele Belot, 2017. "How Wage Announcements Affect Job Search Behaviour - A Field Experimental Investigation," 2017 Meeting Papers 722, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Martin Abel & Rulof Burger & Eliana Carranza & Patrizio Piraino, 2019. "Bridging the Intention-Behavior Gap? The Effect of Plan-Making Prompts on Job Search and Employment," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 11(2), pages 284-301, April.
    5. Altmann, Steffen & Falk, Armin & Jäger, Simon & Zimmermann, Florian, 2018. "Learning about job search: A field experiment with job seekers in Germany," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 164(C), pages 33-49.
    6. N. N., 2017. "WIFO-Monatsberichte, Heft 6/2017," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 90(6), June.
    7. Battisti, Michele & Giesing, Yvonne & Laurentsyeva, Nadzeya, 2019. "Can job search assistance improve the labour market integration of refugees? Evidence from a field experiment," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C).
    8. Goos, Maarten & Rademakers, Emilie & Salomons, Anna & Willekens, Bert, 2019. "Markets for jobs and their task overlap," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C).
    9. Michèle Belot & Philipp Kircher & Paul Muller, 2018. "How Wage Announcements Affect Job Search - A Field Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 7302, CESifo Group Munich.
    10. Jingcheng Fu & Martin Sefton & Richard Upward, 2017. "Social comparisons in job search: experimental evidence," Discussion Papers 2017-10, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
    11. Gürtzgen, Nicole & Diegmann (né Nolte), André & Pohlan, Laura & van den Berg, Gerard J., 2018. "Do digital information technologies help unemployed job seekers find a job? Evidence from the broadband internet expansion in Germany," Working Paper Series 2018:21, IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy.
    12. John J. Conlon & Laura Pilossoph & Matthew Wiswall & Basit Zafar, 2018. "Labor Market Search With Imperfect Information and Learning," NBER Working Papers 24988, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    13. Eva M. Berger & Günther König & Henning Mueller & Felix Schmidt & Daniel Schunk, 2016. "Self-Regulation Training, Labor Market Reintegration of Unemployed Individuals, and Locus of Control - Evidence from a Natural Field Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 6246, CESifo Group Munich.
    14. Eva M. Berger & Guenther Koenig & Henning Mueller & Felix Schmidt & Daniel Schunk, 2016. "Self-Regulation Training, Labor Market Reintegration of Unemployed Individuals, and Locus of Control Evidence from a Natural Field Experiment," Working Papers 1622, Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz, revised 2016.
    15. Joost Bollens & Bart Cockx, 2017. "Effectiveness of a job vacancy referral scheme," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 6(1), pages 1-24, December.
    16. Michele Battisti & Yvonne Giesing & Nadzeya Laurentsyeva, 2018. "Can Job Search Assistance Improve the Labour Market Integration for Refugees? Evidence from a Field Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 7292, CESifo Group Munich.
    17. Eva m. Berger & Guenther Koenig & Henning Müller & Felix Schmidt & Daniel Schunk, 2017. "Self-Regulation Training and Job Search Effort: A Natural Field Experiment within an Active Labor Market Program," Working Papers 1712, Gutenberg School of Management and Economics, Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz.
    18. Rainer Eppel & Helmut Mahringer & Petra Sauer, 2017. "Österreich 2025 – Arbeitslosigkeit und die Rolle der aktiven Arbeitsmarktpolitik," WIFO Monatsberichte (monthly reports), WIFO, vol. 90(6), pages 493-505, June.
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    23. Abebe, Girum & Caria, Stefano & Fafchamps, Marcel & Falco, Paolo & Franklin, Simon & Quinn, Simon, 2017. "Anonymity of distance? Job search and labour market exclusion in a growing African city," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 86573, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    online job search; occupational broadness; search design;

    JEL classification:

    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion
    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments

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