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Employment probation as a sorting mechanism.

  • Economics


Using data from the 1982 National Center for Research in Vocational Education employer survey, the author finds evidence strongly supporting the hypothesis that employment probation induces self-selection by workers. Those who accepted jobs with probationary employment tended to be more efficient workers and less likely to quit than those who took jobs without probation. The author hypothesizes that workers who fear they will not last through the probationary period, either because they are not sure their performance will be adequate or they think they may quit, will not apply for jobs with probation, whereas those who are more confident that their work will be acceptable and that they will not quit will apply for such jobs in order to obtain the higher wages that commonly attach to jobs with probation. (Abstract courtesy JSTOR.)

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