NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Who Gets Hired? The Importance of Finding an Open Slot

Edward P. Lazear, Kathryn L. Shaw, Christopher T. Stanton

NBER Working Paper No. 22202
Issued in April 2016
NBER Program(s):LS

A model of hiring into posted job slots suggests hiring is based on comparative advantage: being hired depends not only on one’s own skill but also on the skills of other applicants. The model has numerous implications. First, bumping of applicants occurs when one job-seeker is slotted into a lower paying job by another applicant who is more skilled. Second, less able workers are more likely to be unemployed because they are bumped. Third, vacancies are higher for harder to fill skilled jobs. Fourth, some workers are over-qualified for their jobs whereas others are under-qualified. These implications are borne out using four different data sets.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w22202

Forthcoming: Who Gets Hired? The Importance of Finding an Open Slot, Edward Lazear, Kathryn Shaw, Christopher Stanton. in Firms and the Distribution of Income: The Roles of Productivity and Luck, Lazear and Shaw. 2016

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