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Does Searching Broader Improve Job Prospects? A Field Experiment

Philipp Kircher (), Paul Muller () and Michèle Belot ()

No 530, 2015 Meeting Papers from Society for Economic Dynamics

Abstract: We investigate experimentally the effects of a web-based information intervention for employment prospects. We invited 300 job seekers to search for jobs in our computer facilities at the University of Edinburgh 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. The manipulation consisted of providing suggestions of alternative jobs that could be considered (given the profile of the job seeker). These suggestions were made using background information from real labour market transitions. We find that such intervention works and affects job search behaviour. For job seekers who are searching relatively narrowly, such intervention broadens their search and significantly improve their job prospects. The intervention is ineffective for those who are already searching broadly.

Date: 2015
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp
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