Anna Zaharieva (University of Bielefeld), 14.06.2023

Topic: “How Have You Found Your Job? Effects of the Job Search Channels on Labour Market Outcomes in Germany”


The most popular method to acquire a job is to use one’s circle of acquaintances or social
networks to find a position. However, in the current research, there is still no clear conclusion
if this job search method has positive implications for different job outcomes such as starting
wages. Assuming that the effects are non-monotonic and depend on the type of utilized networks
allows accommodating both types of evidence. In line with the assumption, this paper studies
the effects of this job search approach in the context of Germany compared to the formal
individual application procedure using the county-level data from the SOEP. With the help of
the propensity score analysis – both matching and weighting – robust negative effects are found
in the case of the aggregated networks. Disaggregating respondents by the type of network used friends, family, or colleagues – reveals that only the first two types of ties result in a decrease
in starting wages, while the last one generates wage premia. The proposed explanation for
this evidence is the differences in abilities of recommended job-seekers. The last part of the
evaluation concentrates on the heterogeneity of outcomes by sex and region of the country.