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Disentangling the Attractiveness of Telework to Employees: A Factorial Survey Experiment


  • Moens, Eline

    (Ghent University)

  • Verhofstadt, Elsy

    (Ghent University)

  • Van Ootegem, Luc

    (Ghent University)

  • Baert, Stijn

    (Ghent University)


This research adds to the literature on the attractiveness of telework to employees. To this end, we set up an innovative factorial survey experiment in which a high-quality sample of employees evaluates job offers with diverging characteristics, among which a wide variation in telework possibilities. We find that the relationship between the possibility to telework and job attractiveness is approximately linear: 10 percentage points more telework hours yield a rise of 2.2 percentage points in job attractiveness and, therefore, the willingness to give up an increase of 2.3 percentage points in wage in the new job. Our experimental design also allows us to investigate the underlying mechanisms of this relationship as well as its moderators. We find that the attractiveness of telework is particularly explained by expectations of an improved work-life balance, more work scheduling autonomy, a higher job satisfaction, and more work methods autonomy in jobs with a greater possibility to telework. In addition, our analyses show that less conscientious employees are on average more attracted to jobs with greater telework possibilities, so that it is important that self-selection in jobs with more telework is well-monitored.

Suggested Citation

  • Moens, Eline & Verhofstadt, Elsy & Van Ootegem, Luc & Baert, Stijn, 2022. "Disentangling the Attractiveness of Telework to Employees: A Factorial Survey Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 15190, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp15190

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Haoran He & David Neumark & Qian Weng, 2021. "Do Workers Value Flexible Jobs? A Field Experiment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 39(3), pages 709-738.
    2. Anne Aguiléra & Virginie Lethiais & Alain Rallet & Laurent Proulhac, 2016. "Home-based telework in France: Characteristics, barriers and perspectives," Post-Print hal-01369611, HAL.
    3. Nicole Maestas & Kathleen J. Mullen & David Powell & Till von Wachter & Jeffrey B. Wenger, 2023. "The Value of Working Conditions in the United States and the Implications for the Structure of Wages," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 113(7), pages 2007-2047, July.
    4. Louis Lippens & Eline Moens & Philippe Sterkens & Johannes Weytjens & Stijn Baert, 2021. "How do employees think the COVID-19 crisis will affect their careers?," PLOS ONE, Public Library of Science, vol. 16(5), pages 1-19, May.
    5. Claudia Pigini & Stefano Staffolani, 2019. "Teleworkers in Italy: who are they? Do they make more?," International Journal of Manpower, Emerald Group Publishing Limited, vol. 40(2), pages 265-285, February.
    6. Aguilera, Anne & Lethiais, Virginie & Rallet, Alain & Proulhac, Laurent, 2016. "Home-based telework in France: Characteristics, barriers and perspectives," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 92(C), pages 1-11.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gavoille, Nicolas & Hazans, Mihails, 2022. "Personality Traits, Remote Work and Productivity," IZA Discussion Papers 15486, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).

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    More about this item


    telework; job attractiveness; factorial survey experiment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J81 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Working Conditions
    • J31 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Wage Level and Structure; Wage Differentials
    • J63 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Turnover; Vacancies; Layoffs
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being

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