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Interviews and the Assignment of Workers to Jobs

Author

Listed:
  • Ronald Wolthoff

    (University of Toronto)

  • Benjamin Lester

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia)

Abstract

This paper studies the effect of screening costs on the equilibrium allocation of workers with different productivities to firms with different technologies. In the model, a worker's type is private information, but can be learned by the firm during a costly screening or interviewing process. We characterize the planner's problem in this environment and determine its solution. A firm may receive applications from workers with different productivities, but should in general not interview them all. Once a sufficiently good applicant has been found, the firm should instead make a hiring decision immediately. We show that the planner's solution can be decentralized if workers direct their search to contracts posted by firms. These contracts must include the wage that the firm promises to pay to a worker of a particular type, as well as a hiring policy which indicates which types of workers will be hired immediately, and which types will lead the firm to keep interviewing additional applicants.

Suggested Citation

  • Ronald Wolthoff & Benjamin Lester, 2012. "Interviews and the Assignment of Workers to Jobs," 2012 Meeting Papers 631, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  • Handle: RePEc:red:sed012:631
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    File URL: https://economicdynamics.org/meetpapers/2012/paper_631.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Jan Eeckhout & Philipp Kircher, 2010. "Sorting and Decentralized Price Competition," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(2), pages 539-574, March.
    2. Becker, Gary S, 1973. "A Theory of Marriage: Part I," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(4), pages 813-846, July-Aug..
    3. Shouyong Shi, 2002. "A Directed Search Model of Inequality with Heterogeneous Skills and Skill-Biased Technology," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(2), pages 467-491.
    4. Shi, Shouyong, 2001. "Frictional Assignment. I. Efficiency," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 232-260, June.
    5. Robert Shimer, 2005. "The Assignment of Workers to Jobs in an Economy with Coordination Frictions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(5), pages 996-1025, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ronald Wolthoff, 2014. "Applications and Interviews: Firms' Recruiting Decisions in a Frictional Labor Market," Working Papers tecipa-522, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
    2. Ronald Wolthoff & Pieter Gautier & Xiaoming Cai, 2016. "Inclusive versus Exclusive Markets:," 2016 Meeting Papers 262, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Xiaoming Cai & Pieter Gautier & Ronald Wolthoff, 2015. "Inclusive versus Exclusive Markets: Search Frictions and Competing Mechanisms," Working Papers tecipa-545, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.

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