Bridging the intention-behavior gap? The effect of plan-making prompts on job search and employment

Stellenbosch Working Paper Series No. WP11/2018
 
Publication date: June 2018
 
Author(s):
[protected email address] (Middlebury College)
[protected email address] (Department of Economics, Stellenbosch University)
[protected email address] (World Bank)
[protected email address] (University of Cape Town)
 
Abstract:

We test the effects of plan-making on job search and employment. In a field experiment with unemployed youths, participants who complete a detailed job search plan increase the number of job applications submitted (15%) but not the time spent searching, consistent with intention-behavior gaps observed at baseline. Job seekers in the plan-making group diversify their search strategy and use more formal search channels. This greater search efficiency and effectiveness translate into more job offers (30%) and employment (26%). Weekly reminders and peer-support sub-treatments do not improve the impacts of plan-making, suggesting that limited attention and accountability are unlikely mechanisms.

 
JEL Classification:

J64, J68, C93, D91

Keywords:

Action Plan; Job Search; Active Labor Market Policy

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17 May 2024
This week was another poor showing on the local industrial data front, with internal trade data mixed. While we still see very subdued quarterly growth, there is an increased possibility that the economy may have stagnated or tipped into a contraction in 2024Q1 relative to 2023Q4. Policy was also in focus as President Cyril Ramaphosa signed the National...

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