Publicizing Female Friendliness of Work Environment in Job Advertisements

Last registered on November 29, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Publicizing Female Friendliness of Work Environment in Job Advertisements
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0008342
Initial registration date
November 25, 2021

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
November 29, 2021, 8:42 AM EST

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.

Locations

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Primary Investigator

Affiliation
Florida International University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
World Bank
PI Affiliation
World Bank

Additional Trial Information

Status
On going
Start date
2021-04-01
End date
2022-12-31
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Abstract
We conduct a field experiment in which employers publicize female-friendly job characteristics---the characteristics that may matter particularly to women---in their job ads. Because of female-specific barriers such as social norms and risks of harassment, there may exist certain job characteristics that concern particularly women. For example, flexible work time may be as important as salaries for women, while it may not be so for men. These characteristics, however, may be hard to observe, and as a result, women may not apply for jobs. This information friction on female-friendly job characteristics is the focus of our research. We will examine whether publicizing female friendliness leads women to apply for and get well-matched jobs and whether it also helps employers hire well-matched workers.
Our interventions are twofold: the first intervention displays female-friendly characteristics in the job ads of randomly selected employers; the second intervention adds female-friendliness information to randomly selected job alerts that are sent to jobseekers individually. This combination of interventions allows us to examine the impacts on both jobseekers and employers. The experiment is conducted in the entirety of an online job portal in Pakistan.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Fasih, Tazeen et al. 2021. "Publicizing Female Friendliness of Work Environment in Job Advertisements." AEA RCT Registry. November 29. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.8342
Sponsors & Partners

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Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
There are two interventions that publicize the following five types of female-friendly job characteristics:
(a) Supervisor’s gender: male, female, or either
(b) Gender composition of coworkers: percentage of female workers
(c) Work flexibility: whether flexible work time and remote work are available
(d) Transport assistance: whether transport allowance and pick-and-drop vehicle are available
(e) Overnight travel: how frequently overnight travel is required

While the female-friendliness information is collected for all job ads from all employers, the information is randomly publicized in interventions 1 and 2 as described below.

Intervention 1 displays all five types of female-friendly characteristics in all job ads of randomly selected treatment employers, who constitute 50% of all employers in the job portal. The information about female-friendly characteristics is public to all jobseekers and whoever visits the job portal. In the job ads of the other 50% employers (control employers), none of the female-friendly characteristics is displayed.

Intervention 2 publicizes the female-friendly characteristics through job alerts that are sent to jobseekers. There are seven types of job alerts that include the following information:

Type 1: job title, required years of experience, firm’s name and location, and application deadline
Type 2: type 1 + gender preference (male, female, or no preference)
Type 3: type 2 + supervisor’s gender
Type 4: type 2 + gender composition of coworkers
Type 5: type 2 + work flexibility
Type 6: type 2 + transport assistance
Type 7: type 2 + overnight travel

Gender preference has already been publicly included in all job ads. (Thus, it is not added by our experiment.) We include gender preference in Intervention 2 to disentangle the effects of the gender-friendliness information that is publicized in our experiment from the effects of gender-preference information.

Job alert types are randomized across jobseekers within each job. (Therefore, the randomization is at the job-jobseeker level.) More specifically, the seven types of job alerts are randomized across jobseekers for each job of a treatment employer. For the jobs of control employers, since gender-friendliness information is not publicized, only two types (type 1 and type 2) are randomized across jobseekers within each job. Therefore, a jobseeker may receive all types of job alerts for different jobs.
Intervention Start Date
2021-09-16
Intervention End Date
2022-01-31

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
[Employer/job-level outcomes]
E1: The number of applications from women and men
E2: Whether a position is filled
E3: Job match quality: employer’s subjective rating on hired workers’ skills; employer’s subjective assessment about hired workers’ motivation; employer’s overall satisfaction about hired workers
E4: Turnover
E5: Salaries

[Jobseeker-level outcomes]
W1: Whether a jobseeker clicks a job ad link embedded in a job alert
W2: Whether a jobseeker applies for an alerted job (i.e., a job for which s/he receives a job alert)
W3: Whether a jobseeker is shortlisted for an alerted job
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
[Employer/job-level outcomes]
E6: Whether a woman is hired for the position
E7: Employer’s satisfaction about hiring experience for the position through the online job portal
E8: Employer’s subjective assessment of the quality of applicants

[Jobseeker-level outcomes]
W4: Whether a jobseeker is employed
W5: Whether a jobseeker is employed full- or part-time
W6: Current salary
W7: Subjective rating on how well his/her skills fit his/her current job
W8: Satisfactions about the conditions and amenities of his/her current job
W9: Overall satisfaction about his/her current status
W10: How much domestic responsibilities prevent him/her from working and/or searching for jobs
W11: Family members’ satisfaction about his/her current job
W12: Beliefs about female-friendly job characteristics: likelihood of a direct supervisor being female; proportion of female coworkers; likelihood of a job allowing flexible work arrangements; likelihood of a job providing transport assistance; likelihood of a job requiring overnight travel
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Our experiment is conducted in the entirety of an online job platform in Pakistan. Below are the overall procedures.

1. A half of all employers are randomly assigned as treatment employers, and the other half are control employers. As explained in 3 below, the female-friendliness information is publicized only for the jobs of treatment employers.
2. When treatment and control employers advertise jobs, both of them are required to provide the information about female-friendly job characteristics.
3. Job ads are posted in the online job portal.
[Intervention 1] The job ads of treatment employers include the female-friendliness information, which is public to everyone. The job ads of control employers do not include it.
4. Job alerts: Job alerts are emailed to jobseekers. Based on an algorithm of the online job portal, jobseekers to whom to send a job alert are identified for each job.
[Intervention 2] Intervention 2 randomizes the types of information included in the job alerts. There are seven types of job alerts, as explained in the section of Interventions. For each of the jobs of treatment employers, the seven types are randomized across the identified jobseekers to whom to send a job alert for the job. For each of the jobs of control employers, two types (types 1 and 2) are randomized across the identified jobseekers to whom to send a job alert for the job.
5. Jobseekers apply for jobs, and employers screen applications. Note that jobseekers can apply for any jobs regardless of whether they receive job alerts for the jobs or not.

Note. Whether the gender-friendliness information is included in a job ad or not depends on an employer's treatment status, regardless of how many jobs the employer advertises.

---Data---
We will use the following data.
(1) Administrative data of the online job portal: It consists of employer data, job data, jobseeker data, application data, and job alert click data. While the application data includes application outcomes (such as whether an applicant is shortlisted, offered a job, and hired), the information about application outcomes is incomplete in the sense that it is voluntarily provided by employers and therefore that it is available only for a fraction of jobs. Our analysis on the effect on the probability of a jobseeker being shortlisted will focus on the jobs for which application outcomes are available.
(2) Baseline online surveys of employers and jobseekers: All active employers and jobseekers in the job portal are invited to take the online surveys.
(3) Endline telephonic surveys of employers (twice): Employers who post job ads during the experiment will be interviewed over the phone. The first endline survey will be conducted between December 2021 and February 2022. The second endline will be conducted in fall 2022.
(4) Endline online surveys of jobseekers (twice): All active jobseekers will be invited to the endline online surveys. The first endline survey will be conducted in February-March 2022; the second endline will be in fall 2022.

---Analysis---
[Employer/job-level effects]
To estimate the effects of publicizing the gender-friendly job characteristics, we will regress employer/job-level outcomes on the employer treatment status dummy, the female-friendly job characteristics, and the interactions between the dummy and the female-friendly job characteristics. Since the effects are expected to be different depending on gender-friendly job characteristics, we will capture the differential effects by including the interaction terms.

[Jobseeker-level effects]
The effects of informing jobseekers about gender-friendly characteristics through job alerts (i.e., intervention 2) will be estimated.

For outcome variables W1-W3, the unit of analysis is a job-jobseeker pair. The sample will be the job-jobseeker pairs for which job alerts are created and sent. We will regress the outcome variables on the female-friendly job characteristics, the dummies whether female-friendly job characteristics are included in the job alert, and the interactions between them (e.g., supervisor gender, whether supervisor gender is included in the job alert, the interaction between them).
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization is conducted by the system of the online job portal. The randomization of employers is conducted across all registered employers without stratifications. The randomization of job alert types is stratified by job ads. That is, within jobseekers to whom job alerts for a particular job are sent, job alert types are randomized.
Randomization Unit
Intervention 1: Employer
Intervention 2: Job-jobseeker pair
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
Intervention 1: 7000 employers
The number of all employers in the online job portal is much more than 7000 employers. While all employers are randomly assigned their treatment status, approximately 7000 employers are expected to advertise jobs during the experiment period. This is why the number of clusters is 7000 employers.

Intervention 2: 5 million job-jobseeker pairs (= 24,000 jobs x 200 job alerts)
Sample size: planned number of observations
[Employers] Administrative data: 7,000 employers Endline survey data: 3,500-5,000 employers [Jobs] Administrative data: 24,000 jobs Endline survey data: 7,000-14,000 jobs [Job-jobseeker pairs] Administrative data: 5 million pairs, which consist of 24,000 jobs and 200,000 jobseekers. [Jobseekers] Administrative data: 200,000 jobseekers Endline survey data: 2,000 jobseekers
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
[Intervention 1]
3500 treatment employers; 3500 control employers

[Intervention 2]
Of the job alerts created for treatment employers' jobs, each job alert type has a one seventh share. (Each type has 5 million x 50% x 1/7 = 357,000 job alerts).
Of the job alerts created for control employers' jobs, type 1 has a one seventh share, while type 2 has a six seventh share.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Florida International IRB Board, Office of Research Integrity
IRB Approval Date
2021-03-22
IRB Approval Number
IRB-21-0099