Do Jobseekers Value Diversity Information? Evidence From a Field Experiment and Human Capital Disclosures
Journal of Accounting Research, Forthcoming
71 Pages Posted: 9 Feb 2022 Last revised: 21 Jan 2024
Date Written: January 31, 2023
We examine how information about the diversity of a potential employer’s workforce affects individuals’ job-seeking behavior. We embed a field experiment in job recommendation emails from a leading career advice agency in the U.S. The experimental treatment involves highlighting a diversity metric to jobseekers. Our results indicate that disclosing diversity scores in job postings leads jobseekers to click on firms with higher diversity scores, with such effects varying across jobseeker demographics. A follow-up survey provides evidence on potential explanations for why jobseekers value diversity information. We then examine how jobseekers’ preferences for diversity relate to disclosure choices under the U.S. SEC Human Capital Disclosure requirement. We find that firms in industries characterized by higher jobseeker responsiveness to diversity information tend to voluntarily disclose diversity metrics in their 10-Ks under these new disclosure requirements.
Keywords: Diversity, Job Search, Human Capital Disclosure, Field Experiment
JEL Classification: M14. J64, D40, D83, M41, C93
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation