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Behavioural Insights on Youth Employment Services: Evidence from the UK Gabriella Cagliesi Business School, University of Greenwich and Denise Hawkes Doctoral.

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Presentation on theme: "Behavioural Insights on Youth Employment Services: Evidence from the UK Gabriella Cagliesi Business School, University of Greenwich and Denise Hawkes Doctoral."— Presentation transcript:

1 Behavioural Insights on Youth Employment Services: Evidence from the UK Gabriella Cagliesi Business School, University of Greenwich and Denise Hawkes Doctoral School, UCL Institute of Education

2 The Job Centre Is this what was intended?

3 The Job Centre Advisor Active Labour Market Policy wants the advisor to be active in equipping people for work. Providing relevant information required for jobs IS this the reality? atch?v=ICBojdGMRFQ atch?v=ICBojdGMRFQ OFF FLOW INCENTIVE Good advisor has high off flow

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6 Introduction Traditional analysis and interpretation of labour market: – Presumption that people have a tendency to take “action”, by searching and wanting to work – “Neoclassical” interpretation of decisions, based on cost/benefit analysis Such an approach is however challenged: – Evidence of clients who are either not willing or are unable to take up employment support – Evidence of complexity of economic actions, resulting from the interplay of economic considerations, psychological characteristics and the embeddedness of individuals in their social networks Reflecting on the services provided by the Job Centre for Young People in the UK: – Focusing on the how rather than the what should be done

7 Policy Environment Looking at youth employment services (those age 18-24) Youth contract provided the young job seeker weekly appointments with a JC Plus advisor More job search being undertaken online than before, through JC Plus website and subcontractor Increased use of sanctions in an attempt to bring down the levels of unemployment benefit claiming UK, EU wide, high levels of youth unemployment Cabinet Office Nudge Unit (Behavioural Insights Team) Babcock et al (2012) suggests labour economics could learn a lot by looking at how active labour market policies are delivered rather than just that they are provided

8 Youth Unemployment in London at Time of Study Number of initiatives removing individual obstacles to find employment Training and soft skills development Access to information Tax credit/Universal credit Support for childcare Apprenticeships Youth Contract In spite of the success of these policies youth unemployment remains a relevant issue in UK and in London Figure from /gif/_ _youth_unemp_london_ 464.gif

9 Initial Pilot Study 3 groups of young people studied (81 responses in total), to compare the characteristics of the young job seekers with our UG students and young people volunteering at a theatre workshop Suggested that it could prove fruitful to supplement the weekly advisor meetings with: – s/text messages between visit – More focused support around CV development and application preparation – Focus on the wording used in written documents and used by the advisor, to present as opportunities rather than sanctions – Motivate the unemployed youth in terms of main life goal rather than just to find a job

10 Potential Language Implications for Advisor Practice, from pilot Proposed Policy Nudge ExamplePolicy Example Motivate by positive feedback Use positive feedback to encourage more active participation how many jobs have you applied for let’s reflect on this application together Presenting Policy Engagement as an Opportunity Present policy requirements as opportunities rather than punishments you will do this as you have not found a job in six months this placement will help you develop these skills Build on Flexibility to Change Motivate as opportunities as regrets strongest here you must take this job you don’t want to miss this chance

11 Potential Language Implications for Advisor Practice, from pilot Proposed Policy Nudge ExamplePolicy Example Motivate through use of main life goal Main goal may not be a job, often found to be a home you need a jobthis job will enable you to get that home you wanted Promote better information & communication about jobs Jobcentre Plus requires active engagement, try text messages of selected jobs check out job centre plus on your way out did you apply yet to that job texted to you on Thursday? Highlight how they fit in the labour market Demonstrate the roles they could play location, industry, hours this role matches you skills with people

12 Potential Language Implications for Advisor Practice, from pilot Proposed Policy Nudge ExamplePolicy Example Encourage responsibility Enhance their use of personal and professional development skills customer, clientopportunity seeker Utilize their active disposition towards social environment Create a network to deliver positive influences Individual job placements group job placements

13 Stage 2: RCT Developed AIM: To investigate whether sending s with local job vacancies and successful case studies to customers ages has a greater impact on off flow rates than s with generic vacancies or with without case studies Off flow is leaving benefits not necessarily getting a job – In collaboration with the Behavioural Insights Team

14 RCT Design 3 arm trial with customers randomly allocated to groups: – No (Control Group) – Weekly sent with "Hot jobs" (Generic Job Vacancies in London) – sent with "Hot jobs" and a 2-line case study of a local young person who successfully found a job (Generic Job Vacancies in London and Case Studies) s sent for four weeks

15 Arm 2. Jobs template Subject Header: JOBS ALERT from Woolwich JCP! content: Non-Graduate jobs: · Van driver: PostFast Ltd, £19,000 per year, Ref No: To apply, click here: · Security Guard: Bolt Security Services, £9.50/hr, Ref No: 98876B. To apply, click here: · Customer Services Assistant: Next, £6.90/hr, Ref No: G. To apply click here: Graduate jobs: · Project Manager: Halkin Construction, £24,000 per year + bonus, Ref No To apply, click here: · Data Analyst: DataForce, £11.50/hr, Ref No. AH7689. To apply, click here: To apply, click here: · Marketing Assistant: Creavation, £23,000 per year, Ref No To apply, click here:

16 Arm 3. Jobs + motivational template Subject Header: JOBS ALERT from Woolwich JCP! content: Here are this week’s top job opportunities in Greenwich for you. Remember – statistics show that the more jobs you apply for, the quicker you’ll find the job you want, even if it’s not the first one you get. So, get started with your applications and if you need any help, just speak to your personal adviser. Non-Graduate jobs: · Van driver: PostFast Ltd, £19,000 per year, Ref No: To apply, click here: · Security Guard: Bolt Security Services, £9.50/hr, Ref No: 98876B. To apply, click here: · Customer Services Assistant: Next, £6.90/hr, Ref No: G. To apply click here: Graduate jobs: · Project Manager: Halkin Construction, £24,000 per year + bonus, Ref No To apply, click here: · Data Analyst: DataForce, £11.50/hr, Ref No. AH7689. To apply, click here: To apply, click here: · Marketing Assistant: Creavation, £23,000 per year, Ref No To apply, click here: Success story of the week: Last week Bill (20 years old) got a job as an office assistant in Greenwich after just 8 weeks out of work. And he’s now on £3,000 more than his last job! Good luck! Paul Digital Champion, Woolwich Job Centre

17 Additional features of arm Here are this week’s top job opportunities in Greenwich for you. Remember – statistics show that the more jobs you apply for, the quicker you’ll find the job you want, even if it’s not the first one you get. So, get started with your applications and if you need any help, just speak to your personal adviser. Highlighting the support available at the job centre and trying to motivate then to apply, highlighting the opportunities they could be missing

18 Additional features of arm Success story of the week: Last week Bill (20 years old) got a job as an office assistant in Greenwich after just 8 weeks out of work. And he’s now on £3,000 more than his last job! Good luck! Paul Digital Champion, Job Centre Additional feature attempting to make finding a job likely, following pilot suggesting many did not feel this way Personalisation by having Paul sign it off with a good luck message

19 Off Flow impact 143/250 (57%)in the personalised group flowed off. 41/250 (16%) in the non-personalised group flowed off. 76/250 (30%)in the control group flowed off. Needed to having attendance data to confirm this but anecdotal evidence from the advisors suggested this is the case (latent variable attendance possible) Timing of the study, just after the Olympics and New TESCO (maybe affected feelings of respondents)

20 Click Rate Results

21 Reflection on results Points to reflect on: – The trial took place just after the London Olympics, the Borough of Greenwich was one of the host boroughs and indeed in Woolwich the shooting venues were held – The trial took place just after a super TESCO store opened Although both recruited staff before the trial, many would have had temporary posts for the Olympics and have encouragement in the new TESCO opening, possibly affecting job search focus and engagement with the personalised – The trial took place with young people, who are possibly more likely to engage with prompts than older workers – Lack of attendance to weekly meeting data problem, could be personalised helped to prompt attendance to job centre, therefore improved job search from better engagement

22 Initial Studies Conclusion Pilot Study – Suggests a range of testable ideas in how best to deliver job centre services, including motivating by main life goal and focusing on opportunities rather than threats First RCT at Woolwich – Possible benefit of in addition to face-to-face Job Centre Service, especially when is personalised – Focus on young people a benefit here – Lack of attendance data makes measure of engagement difficulty

23 Second Round at the Job Centre Returning to Woolwich and Eltham Focus on the job advisors – STAGE 1 a survey of job centre advisors their perceptions of a good advisor exploring mapping the network of advisors Exploring behavioural insights motivating advisors and their views on these insights for young people – STAGE 2 RCT working with advisors on language used with young people in meeting to work on the Identity of the Job Centre – STAGE 3 Explore future the use of technology to support job search

24 The Future of the Job Centre? Job Centre Model in its current form is rather limited for those Focus on a face-to-face weekly meeting does not match with their previous educational experience: – Lacking support in the face-to-face to actually help them with applications – No real online support between sessions Work Programme substitute? Career Advice? Suggested direction of research is to look at setting "reasonable expectations" to get and to keep a job, modifying the "historical perception" of the Job centre and create new identity

25 Thank you for listening to my Job Centre Adventure Dr Denise Hawkes UCL Institute of Education Thank you for listening to my Job Centre Adventure Dr Denise Hawkes UCL Institute of Education


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