nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2021‒07‒26
six papers chosen by
Patrick Kampkötter
Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

  1. The Efficacy of Tournaments for Non-Routine Team Tasks By Florian Englmaier; Stefan Grimm; Dominik Grothe; David Schindler; Simeon Andreas Dermot Schudy
  2. The effects of incentives, social norms, and employees' values on work performance By Michael Roos; Jessica Reale; Frederik Banning
  3. Non-Base Compensation and the Gender Pay Gap By Hirsch, Boris; Lentge, Philipp
  4. Too Family Friendly? The Consequences of Parent Part-Time Working Rights By Fernández-Kranz, Daniel; Rodríguez-Planas, Núria
  5. Teaching and Incentives: Substitutes or Complements? By James Allen IV; Arlete Mahumane; James Riddell IV; Tanya Rosenblat; Dean Yang; Hang Yu
  6. For Some, Luck Matters More: The Impact of the Great Recession on the Early Careers of Graduates from Different Socio-Economic Backgrounds By Del Bono, Emilia; Morando, Greta

  1. By: Florian Englmaier; Stefan Grimm; Dominik Grothe; David Schindler; Simeon Andreas Dermot Schudy
    Abstract: Tournaments are often used to improve performance in innovation contexts. Tournaments provide monetary incentives but also render teams’ identity and social-image concerns salient. We study the effects of tournaments on team performance in a non-routine task and identify the importance of these behavioral aspects. In a natural field experiment (n>1,700 participants), we vary the salience of team identity, social-image concerns, and whether teams face monetary incentives. Increased salience of team identity does not improve performance. Social-image motivates mainly the top-performing teams. Additional monetary incentives improve all teams’ outcomes without crowding out teams’ willingness to explore or perform similar tasks again.
    Keywords: team-work, tournaments, rankings, incentives, identity, image concerns, innovation, exploration, natural field experiment
    JEL: C93 D90 J24 J33 M52
    Date: 2021
  2. By: Michael Roos; Jessica Reale; Frederik Banning
    Abstract: This agent-based model contributes to a theory of corporate culture in which company performance and employees' behaviour result from the interaction between financial incentives, motivational factors and endogenous social norms. Employees' personal values are the main drivers of behaviour. They shape agents' decisions about how much of their working time to devote to individual tasks, cooperative, and shirking activities. The model incorporates two aspects of the management style, analysed both in isolation and combination: (i) monitoring efforts affecting intrinsic motivation, i.e. the firm is either trusting or controlling, and (ii) remuneration schemes affecting extrinsic motivation, i.e. individual or group rewards. The simulations show that financial incentives can (i) lead to inefficient levels of cooperation, and (ii) reinforce value-driven behaviours, amplified by emergent social norms. The company achieves the highest output with a flat wage and a trusting management. Employees that value self-direction highly are pivotal, since they are strongly (de-)motivated by the management style.
    Date: 2021–07
  3. By: Hirsch, Boris (Leuphana University Lüneburg); Lentge, Philipp (Leuphana University Lüneburg)
    Abstract: This paper investigates whether non-base compensation contributes to the gender pay gap. In wage decompositions, we find that lower bonus payments to women explain about 10% of the gap at the mean and at different quantiles of the unconditional wage distribution whereas the lower prevalence of shift premia and overtime pay among women is unimportant. Among managers, the contribution of bonuses to the mean gap more than doubles and is steadily rising as one moves up the wage distribution. Our findings suggest that gender differences in bonuses are an important contributor to the gender pay gap, particularly in top jobs.
    Keywords: gender pay gap, bonus payments, shift premia, overtime pay, glass ceilings
    JEL: J31 J71
    Date: 2021–07
  4. By: Fernández-Kranz, Daniel (IE Business School, Madrid); Rodríguez-Planas, Núria (Queens College, CUNY)
    Abstract: We use a difference-in-differences model with individual fixed effects to evaluate a 1999 Spanish law granting employment protection to workers with children younger than 6 who had asked for a shorter workweek due to family responsibilities. Our analysis shows that well- intended policies can potentially backfire and aggravate labor market inequalities between men and women, since there is a very gendered take-up, with only women typically requesting part-time work. After the law was enacted, employers were 49% less likely to hire women of childbearing age, 40% more likely to separate from them, and 37% less likely to promote them to permanent contracts, increasing female non-employment by 4% to 8% relative to men of similar age. The results are similar using older women unaffected by the law as a comparison group. Moreover, the law penalized all women of childbearing age, even those who did not have children. These effects were largest in low-skill jobs, at firms with less than 10 employees, and in industries with few part-time workers. These findings are robust to several sensitivity analyses and placebo tests.
    Keywords: female employment transitions and wages, compositional bias, fixed-term and permanent contract employment
    JEL: C23 J16 J18 J62
    Date: 2021–07
  5. By: James Allen IV; Arlete Mahumane; James Riddell IV; Tanya Rosenblat; Dean Yang; Hang Yu
    Abstract: Interventions to promote learning are often categorized into supply- and demand-side approaches. In a randomized experiment to promote learning about COVID-19 among Mozambican adults, we study the interaction between a supply and a demand intervention, respectively: 1) teaching, and 2) providing financial incentives to learners. In theory, teaching and learner-incentives may be substitutes (crowding out one another) or complements (enhancing one another). While experts surveyed in advance predicted that the two would be substitutes, we instead find they are complements. The combination of teaching and incentive treatments has a substantial effect on COVID-19 knowledge test scores, raising them by 0.5 standard deviations.
    JEL: D90 I12
    Date: 2021–07
  6. By: Del Bono, Emilia (ISER, University of Essex); Morando, Greta (University of Essex)
    Abstract: This paper uses variation in unemployment caused by the 2008 recession to analyse socio- economic gaps in graduate outcomes. Our data comes from a survey which collects information on several cohorts of students from all English universities and reports their destinations at 6 months after graduation. The results show that when students from less advantaged family backgrounds graduate during a recession they are more likely to become unemployed, to work part-time, and to earn less than students from more advantaged families. There is evidence that professional networks established while at university are important in explaining some of these socio-economic gaps in outcomes.
    Keywords: graduate employment, socio-economic gap, recession
    JEL: E32 I23 I24 I26 J62
    Date: 2021–07

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