nep-hrm New Economics Papers
on Human Capital and Human Resource Management
Issue of 2022‒10‒10
nine papers chosen by
Patrick Kampkötter
Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen

  1. Stochastic Contracts and Subjective Evaluations By Lang, Matthias
  2. Aversion to Hiring Algorithms: Transparency, Gender Profiling, and Self-Confidence By Dargnies, Marie-Pierre; Hakimov, Rustamdjan; Kübler, Dorothea
  3. International Assortative Matching in the European Labor Market By Peeters, Thomas; van Ours, Jan C.
  4. Collective Bargaining for Women: How Unions Can Create Female-Friendly Jobs By Corradini, Viola; Lagos, Lorenzo; Sharma, Garima
  5. Power and Dignity in the Low-Wage Labor Market: Theory and Evidence from Wal-Mart Workers By Arindrajit Dube; Suresh Naidu; Adam D. Reich
  6. Working from Home Around the World By Cevat Giray Aksoy; Jose Maria Barrero; Nicholas Bloom; Steven J. Davis; Mathias Dolls; Pablo Zarate
  7. Information Frictions and Employee Sorting Between Startups By Kevin A. Bryan; Mitchell Hoffman; Amir Sariri
  8. Training, Worker Mobility, and Employer Coordination By Martins, Pedro S.; Thomas, Jonathan P.
  9. The Geography of Job Tasks By Enghin Atalay; Sebastian Sotelo; Daniel I. Tannenbaum

  1. By: Lang, Matthias (LMU Munich)
    Abstract: Subjective evaluations are widely used, but call for different contracts from classical moral-hazard settings. Previous literature shows that contracts require payments to third parties. I show that the (implicit) assumption of deterministic contracts makes payments to third parties necessary. This paper studies incentive contracts with stochastic compensation, like payments in stock options or uncertain arbitration procedures. These contracts incentivize employees without the need for payments to third parties. In addition, stochastic contracts can be more efficient and can make the principal better off compared to deterministic contracts. My results also address the puzzle about the prevalence of labor contracts with stochastic compensation.
    Keywords: subjective evaluations; stochastic contracts; stochastic compensation; budget-balanced contracts; moral hazard; subjective performance measures; incentives;
    JEL: D80 J33 J41 J70
    Date: 2022–05–18
  2. By: Dargnies, Marie-Pierre (University of Paris Dauphine and PSL); Hakimov, Rustamdjan (University of Lausanne and WZB Berlin); Kübler, Dorothea (WZB Berlin and TU Berlin)
    Abstract: We run an online experiment to study the origins of algorithm aversion. Participants are either in the role of workers or of managers. Workers perform three real-effort tasks: task 1, task 2, and the job task which is a combination of tasks 1 and 2. They choose whether the hiring decision between themselves and another worker is made either by a participant in the role of a manager or by an algorithm. In a second set of experiments, managers choose whether they want to delegate their hiring decisions to the algorithm. In the baseline treatments, we observe that workers choose the manager more often than the algorithm, and managers also prefer to make the hiring decisions themselves rather than delegate them to the algorithm. When the algorithm does not use workers' gender to predict their job task performance and workers know this, they choose the algorithm more often. Providing details on how the algorithm works does not increase the preference for the algorithm, neither for workers nor for managers. Providing feedback to managers about their performance in hiring the best workers increases their preference for the algorithm, as managers are, on average, overconfident.
    Date: 2022–09–09
  3. By: Peeters, Thomas (Erasmus University Rotterdam); van Ours, Jan C. (Erasmus University Rotterdam)
    Abstract: We investigate whether national borders within Europe hinder the assortative matching of workers to firms in a high skilled labor market. We characterize worker productivity as the ability to contribute to physical output and define firm productivity as the capacity to transform physical output into revenues. We rank workers and firms according to their individual productivity estimates and study the ensuing rank correlation to gauge the degree of assortative matching within and across countries. We find strong evidence for positive assortative matching at the national level, and even more so at the international level. This suggests national borders do not prevent workers and firm from pursuing profitable complementarities in production.
    Keywords: assortative matching, international worker mobility, football managers
    JEL: M51 J63 J24 Z22
    Date: 2022–08
  4. By: Corradini, Viola (Massachusetts Institute of Technology); Lagos, Lorenzo (Brown University); Sharma, Garima (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
    Abstract: Why aren't workplaces better designed for women? We show that changing the priorities of those who set workplace policies can create female-friendly jobs. Starting in 2015, Brazil's largest trade union federation made women central to its bargaining agenda. Neither establishments nor workers choose their union, permitting a difference-in-differences design to study causal effects. We find that "bargaining for women" increases female-centric amenities in collective bargaining agreements, which are then reflected in practice (e.g., more female managers, longer maternity leaves, longer job protection). These changes cause women to queue for jobs at treated establishments and separate from them less—both revealed preference measures of firm value. We find no evidence that these gains come at the expense of employment, workers' wages, or firm profits. Hence, prioritizing women's preferences in decision-making can lower within-firm gender inequality through more efficient bargaining.
    Keywords: gender disparities, amenities, collective bargaining, unions
    JEL: J31 J33 J51 J52
    Date: 2022–09
  5. By: Arindrajit Dube; Suresh Naidu; Adam D. Reich
    Abstract: We measure workers’ preferences for wages and non-wage amenities at America’s largest employer, Walmart, using targeted survey experiments. We find that workers have an economically significant willingness to pay for “dignity at work". Consistent with the presence of monopsony power, we estimate hypothetical quit elasticities similar to recent estimates from the literature. We document significant complementarities between wages and non-wage amenities, suggesting that measures of monopsony that do not account for amenities may be biased. We find that workers at low dignity jobs have higher quit elasticities, but lower bargaining elasticities, relative to workers at high dignity jobs. Finally, we use cross-state variation in the bite of Walmart’s 2014 corporate minimum wage to estimate the effects of the minimum wage on both workplace dignity and other amenities. We find no evidence that non-wage amenities are reduced in response to a higher minimum wage, consistent with wage-amenity complementarity and labor market power.
    JEL: J0 J3 J42
    Date: 2022–09
  6. By: Cevat Giray Aksoy; Jose Maria Barrero; Nicholas Bloom; Steven J. Davis; Mathias Dolls; Pablo Zarate
    Abstract: The pandemic triggered a large, lasting shift to work from home (WFH). To study this shift, we survey full-time workers who finished primary school in 27 countries as of mid 2021 and early 2022. Our cross-country comparisons control for age, gender, education, and industry and treat the U.S. mean as the baseline. We find, first, that WFH averages 1.5 days per week in our sample, ranging widely across countries. Second, employers plan an average of 0.7 WFH days per week after the pandemic, but workers want 1.7 days. Third, employees value the option to WFH 2-3 days per week at 5 percent of pay, on average, with higher valuations for women, people with children and those with longer commutes. Fourth, most employees were favorably surprised by their WFH productivity during the pandemic. Fifth, looking across individuals, employer plans for WFH levels after the pandemic rise strongly with WFH productivity surprises during the pandemic. Sixth, looking across countries, planned WFH levels rise with the cumulative stringency of government-mandated lockdowns during the pandemic. We draw on these results to explain the big shift to WFH and to consider some implications for workers, organization, cities, and the pace of innovation.
    JEL: D22 E24 J20 L23
    Date: 2022–09
  7. By: Kevin A. Bryan; Mitchell Hoffman; Amir Sariri
    Abstract: Would workers apply to better firms if they were more informed about firm quality? Collaborating with 26 science-based startups, we create a custom job board and invite business school alumni to apply. The job board randomizes across applicants to show coarse expert ratings of all startups' science and/or business model quality. Making this information visible strongly reallocates applications toward better firms. This reallocation holds even when restricting to high-quality workers. The treatments operate in part by shifting worker beliefs about firms' right-tail outcomes. Despite these benefits, workers make post-treatment bets indicating highly overoptimistic beliefs about startup success, suggesting a problem of broader informational deficits.
    JEL: M50 M51
    Date: 2022–09
  8. By: Martins, Pedro S. (Nova School of Business and Economics); Thomas, Jonathan P. (University of Edinburgh)
    Abstract: This paper presents a new model of firms' decisions on training in a context of potential worker mobility. Such worker mobility can be influenced by employers coordination, namely through the operation of no-poach agreements and employers' associations (EAs). We then present supporting evidence from rich matched panel data, including firms' EA affiliation and workers' training levels. We find that workers' mobility between firms in the same EA is considerably lower than mobility between equivalent firms not in the same EA. We also find that training provision by EA firms is considerably higher.
    Keywords: employers organisations, no-poach agreements, worker mobility
    JEL: J53 J62 L40
    Date: 2022–08
  9. By: Enghin Atalay; Sebastian Sotelo; Daniel I. Tannenbaum
    Abstract: We introduce new measurement tools to understand the sources of earnings differences across space. Based on the natural language employers use in job vacancy text, we develop granular measures of job tasks and of worker specialization. We find that jobs in larger commuting zones involve greater interpersonal interactions and have higher computer software requirements. Between 10 and 50 percent of task and technology variation between large and small commuting zones exists within occupations. Further, workers in larger markets are more specialized within occupations. Tasks, technologies, and worker specialization account for a substantial portion of the market size premium even within occupations.
    JEL: J20 J24 R12 R23
    Date: 2022–09

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