Aftab et al Policy brief September 2023
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- Despite the growth of job search platforms in developing countries, application rates on the platforms remain quite low suggesting that there might be additional barriers to search.
- We implement experiments on a low-cost job search and matching platform, Job Talash, to understand the barriers that job seekers face in the search process and the returns to additional job search.
- A simple phone call initiation treatment increases application rates dramatically. We believe that psychological costs of initiating applications is the main driver of our results.
- The benefit (return) from these additional applications, measured as interview invitations, is roughly constant rather than decreasing. Additional applications also do not crowd out interviews for other jobseekers.
- Our results suggest that job search platforms can simplify the process of starting job applications or filter jobs for candidates. They should also consider the psychological costs of applying when designing programs intended to increase job search.