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Do Lower Caseloads Improve the Performance of Public Employment Services? New Evidence from German Employment Offices

42 Pages Posted: 13 Sep 2011 Last revised: 3 Jul 2015

Jens Hainmueller

Stanford University - Department of Political Science; Stanford Graduate School of Business; Stanford Immigration Policy Lab

Barbara Hofmann

Government of the Federal Republic of Germany - Institute for Employment Research (IAB)

Gerhard Krug

Institute for Employment Research (IAB); University of Erlangen-Nuremberg - Chair of Empirial Economic Sociology

Katja Wolf

Government of the Federal Republic of Germany - Institute for Employment Research (IAB)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: July 2015

Abstract

The caseworker-to-clients ratio is an important, but understudied, policy parameter that affects both the quality and cost of public employment services that help job seekers find employment. We exploit a large-scale pilot by Germany's employment agency that hired 490 additional caseworkers in 14 of its 779 offices. We find that lowering caseloads caused a decrease in the rate and duration of local unemployment as well as a higher re-employment rate. Disentangling the mechanisms that contributed to this improvement, we find that offices with lowered caseloads increased monitoring and imposed more sanctions but also intensified search efforts and registered additional vacancies.

Keywords: unemployment, job search, active labor market policy

JEL Classification: C14, H43, H83, J68

Suggested Citation

Hainmueller, Jens and Hofmann, Barbara and Krug, Gerhard and Wolf, Katja, Do Lower Caseloads Improve the Performance of Public Employment Services? New Evidence from German Employment Offices (July 2015). Scandinavian Journal of Economics (Forthcoming). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1926683 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1926683

Jens Hainmueller (Contact Author)

Stanford University - Department of Political Science ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.stanford.edu/~jhain/

Stanford Graduate School of Business ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States

Stanford Immigration Policy Lab

30 Alta Road
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Barbara Hofmann

Government of the Federal Republic of Germany - Institute for Employment Research (IAB) ( email )

Regensburger Str. 104
Nuremberg, 90478
Germany

Gerhard Krug

University of Erlangen-Nuremberg - Chair of Empirial Economic Sociology ( email )

Findelgasse 7/9
Nuremberg, 90402
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.sozialforschung.rw.uni-erlangen.de/lehrstuhlteam/mitarbeiterinnen/gerhard-krug.shtml

Institute for Employment Research (IAB) ( email )

Regensburger Str. 104
Nuremberg, 90478
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.iab.de/asp/mitarbeiterDB/showMitarbeiter.asp?pkyMitarbeiter=207

Katja Wolf

Government of the Federal Republic of Germany - Institute for Employment Research (IAB) ( email )

Regensburger Str. 104
Nuremberg, 90478
Germany

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