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Multitasking and the Benefits of Objective Performance Measurement - Evidence from a Field Experiment

  • Sliwka, Dirk
  • Manthei, Kathrin

We examine the benefits of objective performance measurement in a field experiment conducted in a retail bank. At the outset objective performance measures of pro fits in each branch were only available on the branch level and managers allocated bonuses to their employees based on subjective assessments. In a subset of the branches, managers then obtained access to individual performance measures. We find a significant positive impact of objective performance measurement on effort and financial performance. This productivity increase is mainly driven by larger branches and higher sales for non-core products which is well in line with a formal economic model on the optimal allocation of monitoring efforts under subjective evaluations in multitask environments.

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File URL: http://econstor.eu/bitstream/10419/79968/1/VfS_2013_pid_244.pdf
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Paper provided by Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association in its series Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order with number 79968.

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Date of creation: 2013
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:vfsc13:79968
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.socialpolitik.org/
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  1. Florian Englmaier & Andreas Roider & Uwe Sunde, 2012. "The Role of Salience in Performance Schemes: Evidence from a Field Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 3771, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. Canice Prendergast & Robert H. Topel, 1993. "Favoritism in Organizations," NBER Working Papers 4427, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Bandiera, Oriana & Barankay, Iwan & Rasul, Imran, 2011. "Field Experiments with Firms," CEPR Discussion Papers 8412, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Oriana Bandiera & Iwan Barankay & Imran Rasul, 2010. "Social Incentives in the Workplace," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 77(2), pages 417-458.
  5. Oriana Bandiera & Iwan Barankay & Imran Rasul, 2007. "Incentives for Managers and Inequality Among Workers: Evidence From a Firm-Level Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 729-773, 05.
  6. Prendergast, Canice & Topel, Robert, 1993. "Discretion and bias in performance evaluation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 37(2-3), pages 355-365, April.
  7. Imran Rasul & Iwan Barankay & Orana Bandiera, 2005. "Social preferences and the response to incentives: Evidence from personnel data," Natural Field Experiments 00212, The Field Experiments Website.
  8. Tanjim Hossain & John A. List, 2009. "The Behavioralist Visits the Factory: Increasing Productivity Using Simple Framing Manipulations," NBER Working Papers 15623, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Bandiera, Oriana & Barankay, Iwan & Rasul, Imran, 2009. "Social Connections and Incentives in the Workplace: Evidence from Personnel Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 7114, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  10. Johannes Berger & Christine Harbring & Dirk Sliwka, 2013. "Performance Appraisals and the Impact of Forced Distribution--An Experimental Investigation," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 59(1), pages 54-68, June.
  11. Holmstrom, Bengt & Milgrom, Paul, 1991. "Multitask Principal-Agent Analyses: Incentive Contracts, Asset Ownership, and Job Design," Journal of Law, Economics and Organization, Oxford University Press, vol. 7(0), pages 24-52, Special I.
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