Alternative Work Arrangements
Alternative work arrangements, defined both by working conditions and by workers’ relationship to their employers, are heterogeneous and common in the U.S. This article reviews the literature on workers’ preferences over these arrangements, inputs to firms’ decision to offer them, and the impact of regulation. It also highlights several descriptive facts. Work arrangements have been relatively stable over the past 20 years, work conditions vary substantially with education, and jobs with schedule or location flexibility are less family-friendly on average. This last fact helps explain why women are not more likely to have schedule or location flexibility and seem to largely reduce hours to get more family-friendly arrangements.
We would like to thank Camilla Adams, Jenna Anders, Victoria Angelova, Hailey Brace, Theodore Caputi, Max Maydanchik, and Amy Tarczynski for outstanding research assistance. Financial support from NSF CAREER Grant No. 1454476 is gratefully acknowledged. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.