Gender, Trial Employment, and Initial Salaries

46 Pages Posted: 21 Jun 2014 Last revised: 7 Jan 2015

See all articles by Adina Sterling

Adina Sterling

Stanford Graduate School of Business, Knight Management Center

Roberto M. Fernandez

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Sloan School of Management

Date Written: June 20, 2014

Abstract

Gender disparities in wages among professionals exist because women begin their professional careers making less than men. Prior research indicates this occurs because employers lack information about prospective employees at the hiring stage which triggers discrimination and bias in wage setting. Building on work that suggests organizational practices impact inequality, we examine if trial employment affects initial salaries by providing employers a first-hand look at candidates prior to employers making permanent hiring decisions. Using a unique data set that is well-suited for this inquiry, we find evidence that a female wage discount occurs among entry-level business professionals. However, as predicted, the female wage discount dissipates when offers are received from employers where trial employment takes place.

JEL Classification: J30, J71, J16

Suggested Citation

Sterling, Adina and Fernandez, Roberto M., Gender, Trial Employment, and Initial Salaries (June 20, 2014). MIT Sloan Research Paper No. 5118-14, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2456817 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2456817

Adina Sterling (Contact Author)

Stanford Graduate School of Business, Knight Management Center ( email )

655 Knight Way
Stanford, CA 94305-5015
United States

Roberto M. Fernandez

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - Sloan School of Management ( email )

100 Main Street
E62-416
Cambridge, MA 02142
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
132
Abstract Views
1,085
rank
244,107
PlumX Metrics