Occupations and survey research: methodological and substantive applications exploiting occupations as social contexts 3
|Convenor||Professor Christian Ebner (University of Cologne, Germany )|
|Coordinator 1||Dr Daniela Rohrbach-schmidt (Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training, Bonn, Germany)|
The demand side of the labour market face decisions under uncertainty during the recruitment process. Knowledge about the occupational names can ease this uncertainty and ease the re-cruiting process, particularly, if their degree of standardization is high. Using data from the German Job Vacancy Survey, we will identify occupational differences in firms recruiting processes. First findings show that firms are more suc-cessful in recruiting, when searching for occupations with low standardization and more likely to cancel their search for high qualified and highly standardized occupations, which indicates shortages of skilled labour in different occupational groups.
In segmented labour markets, occupations function as an institution that transfers signals about the knowledge and skills required for practicing a professional activity and reduces uncertainties in the job matching. To measure the impact of the occupational institution I established two indicators: the degree of standardised credentials and the degree of legal access regulation of occupations. Both are based on information from BERUFENET, the career orientation portal of the German Federal Employment Agency. Besides describing the data base and the way of calculating the indicators, I will present and discuss first applications in analyses of e.g. occupational mobility.
In contrast to the existing task operationalisations in Germany that are based on survey data, we use – following the approach in the U.S. – expert knowledge about competencies and skills – that are usually required for performing an occupation. Based on an expert database (BERUFENET of the German Federal Employment Agency), we provide an alternative task operationalisation for Germany and calculate the main task type and the composition of tasks for different occupational classifications (German Classification of Occupations 1988 and German Classification of Occupations 2010) and for different classification levels (2-digit- and 3-digit-codes).
We propose two identifiable categories of occupational properties: the degree of standardization and the quantity of tasks. Both categories of occupational specific properties could determine information asymmetries during search and, therefore, the costs of search and the observed matching efficiency. We discuss and show in a theoretical model and empirically validate that the degree of standardization of occupations positevely influences the number of matches per observation periods and the quantity of tasks has a negative impact. This implies that standardized vocational training and efforts to raise the transparency contribute to a well-functioning labour market.
By definition, occupation-specific skills are perfectly transferable across employers, but not across occupations. Transferability across occupations depends on how productive these skills are in other occupations. Therefore skill transferability can be determined by how strongly skills required for an occupational activity coincide between two occupations. We propose a concept to measure skill transferability based on expert knowledge about required occupation-specific skills provided at BERUFENET, the career orientation portal of the German Federal Employment Agency. With this indicator for skill transferability, we show that the probability of occupational mobility increases when skills can easily be transferred to another occupation.