Informing employees in small and medium sized firms about training: a randomized field experiment
Last registered on April 22, 2019

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
Informing employees in small and medium sized firms about training: a randomized field experiment
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0004118
Initial registration date
April 18, 2019
Last updated
April 22, 2019 11:29 AM EDT
Location(s)
Region
Primary Investigator
Affiliation
IAB
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
Additional Trial Information
Status
Completed
Start date
2014-02-14
End date
2019-04-17
Secondary IDs
Abstract
We mailed brochures to 10,000 randomly chosen employed German workers in small and medium-sized firms eligible for a subsidized occupational training program called WeGebAU. We informed them about the importance of skill-upgrading occupational training in general and about WeGebAU in particular. Using survey and register data, we estimate effects of the information treatment brochure on awareness of the program, on take-up of WeGebAU and other training, and on subsequent employment.
External Link(s)
Registration Citation
Citation
Stephan, Gesine and Gerard van den Berg. 2019. "Informing employees in small and medium sized firms about training: a randomized field experiment." AEA RCT Registry. April 22. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.4118-1.0.
Former Citation
Stephan, Gesine, Gesine Stephan and Gerard van den Berg. 2019. "Informing employees in small and medium sized firms about training: a randomized field experiment." AEA RCT Registry. April 22. http://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/4118/history/45330.
Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2014-06-02
Intervention End Date
2014-06-03
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
We are interested if the information treatment increased awareness of the WeGebAU program among employed workers. Moreover, we are interested in whether treatment subsequently increased their participation in general training and subsidized training. Finally, we want to evaluate if the treatment affected also workers’ labour market outcomes, i.e., earnings, the probability of changing the job, staying employed or becoming unemployed.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Workers employed in firms with less than 250 employees are eligible to participate in a program called WeGebAU, which provides training subsidies. Statistics by the Federal Employment Agency show that only a small share of all eligible workers takes up this kind of subsidy. To learn if workers lack information on the program and are therefore not aware of its existence, we conduct a randomized controlled trial. Based on German register data from the Federal Employment Agency, we identify employees that meet the program’s eligibility criteria. We then randomize 10,000 of these workers into the treatment group and 10,000 of these workers into the control group. As the eligibility criteria differ for workers at least 45 years old and younger workers, we randomly select 5,000 workers into each treatment and each control group for both age groups. On June 2, 2014 workers in the treatment group received a short cover letter and an information brochure. This brochure contained information on the importance of life-long learning and the benefits of training in general. Moreover, it contained information about WeGebAU and its entitlement conditions. Based on register data and a follow-up survey (collecting among others information on the workers’ awareness on WeGebAU and training participation) we can evaluate treatment effectiveness.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
employed workers
Was the treatment clustered?
No
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
20,000 employees
Sample size: planned number of observations
20,000 employees
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
5,000 employees below age 45 treatment,
5,000 employees 45 years and older treatment,
5,000 employees below age 45 control,
5,000 employees 45 years and older control
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Post-Trial
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Intervention
Is the intervention completed?
No
Is data collection complete?
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
No
Program Files
Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials
Relevant Paper(s)
REPORTS & OTHER MATERIALS