Flexible Work Arrangements in Low Wage Jobs: Evidence from Job Vacancy Data

45 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2020

See all articles by Abi Adams-Prassl

Abi Adams-Prassl

University of Oxford - Department of Economics

Maria Balgova

University of Oxford - University of Oxford, Corpus Christi College, Students

Matthias Qian

University of Oxford

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Abstract

In this paper, we analyze firm demand for flexible jobs by exploiting the language used to describe work arrangements in job vacancies. We take a supervised machine learning approach to classify the work arrangements described in more than 46 million UK job vacancies. We highlight the existence of very different types of flexibility amongst low and high wage vacancies. Job flexibility at low wages is more likely to be offered alongside a wage-contract that exposes workers to earnings risk, while flexibility at higher wages and in more skilled occupations is more likely to be offered alongside a fixed salary that shields workers from earnings variation. We show that firm demand for flexible work arrangements is partly driven by a desire to reduce labor costs; we find that a large and unexpected change to the minimum wage led to a 7 percentage point increase in the proportion of flexible and non-salaried vacancies at low wages.

Keywords: flexible jobs, minimum wage, labor demand

JEL Classification: J23, J31, J80

Suggested Citation

Adams-Prassl, Abi and Balgova, Maria and Qian, Matthias, Flexible Work Arrangements in Low Wage Jobs: Evidence from Job Vacancy Data. IZA Discussion Paper No. 13691, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3695392

Abi Adams-Prassl (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Department of Economics ( email )

Mansfield Road
Oxford, Oxfordshire OX1 4AU
United Kingdom

Maria Balgova

University of Oxford - University of Oxford, Corpus Christi College, Students ( email )

Merton Street
Oxford
United Kingdom

Matthias Qian

University of Oxford

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