Slash Boxes

SoylentNews is people

posted by janrinok on Thursday August 04, @04:34PM   Printer-friendly
from the you-take-the-high-road dept.

Arthur T Knackerbracket has processed the following story:

A new study by Jeroma Adda (Department of Economics) finds that the acquisition of skills is the main contributor to higher salaries for workers, with the magnitude of the effect differing according to the type of skill and the career stage of the worker. Although workers can acquire skills on the job, those who undergo training before entering the job market generally obtain greater wages and are in unemployment less often.

People make a series of choices throughout their careers: whether to get educated/trained before working, which job offers to accept, or whether they should quit their current job. Each decision has an impact on earnings that may unfold over many years, and understanding their effects requires not only examining immediate returns but longer-term outcomes. With this aim, Professor Adda and Christian Dustmann (University College London), in a forthcoming paper in the Journal of Political Economy, estimate a mathematical model to understand the determinants of wage growth. Using comprehensive data on labor market outcomes of German men over several decades, they find that workers' ability levels, their accumulation of human capital, and changing of jobs across different sectors and firms all have significant positive contributions to earnings.

To unpack their findings, it is first important to understand that research on labor markets distinguishes the tasks workers perform into two categories: routine-manual (RM) tasks, which follow well-defined and repetitive procedures that require a modest amount of training; and cognitive-abstract (CA) tasks, which require more technical and creative capabilities. To estimate the returns for each type of skill, the authors classify each occupation according to the predominant type of task. Thus they are able to go beyond the differentiation of returns to different jobs and can estimate the returns to task-specific work experience. Their results indicate that the accumulation of RM and CA skills over the course of an individual's career is the most important driver of wage growth. RM skills contribute more significantly to increases in worker productivity and earnings in the first years of their careers, but once a set of basic skills has been acquired their contribution to wage growth reduces to zero. On the other hand, CA skills take a longer time to be accumulated, and thus take longer to affect earnings, but have a longer-lasting impact, sustained throughout the individuals' career. These differential returns translate to workers in the CA sector earning, on average, higher wages than those in predominantly RM sectors.

[...] The authors also find that mobility of workers across the labor market contributes to higher salaries. Switching between different jobs generates a significant increase in earnings, but this is concentrated in the early years of the worker's career, namely the first job move. Though this change produces large gains, these quickly decline and additional mobility does not seem to contribute to larger returns. However, the authors also observe the existence of lock-in effects: workers are initially allocated to a sector for which they are not the most suited, but the accumulation of experience specific to that sector disincentivizes them from moving to jobs in other sectors.

More information: Jerome Adda et al, Sources of Wage Growth, Journal of Political Economy (2022). DOI: 10.1086/721657

Original Submission

This discussion was created by janrinok (52) for logged-in users only, but now has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by crafoo on Thursday August 04, @04:42PM (2 children)

    by crafoo (6639) on Thursday August 04, @04:42PM (#1264929)

    The market price of your labor is a dependent on the scarcity of your skills, and the demand for those skills. That's it.

    • (Score: 4, Touché) by Michael on Thursday August 04, @07:25PM

      by Michael (7157) on Thursday August 04, @07:25PM (#1264954)

      That assumes legislation and unions on one hand / nepotism, prejudice, corruption and deception on the other have no effect. The claim cannot be reconciled with the observed facts.

      Whatever your favoured economic model, it isn't a law of nature, it's a simplified statistical model of (a subset of) human behaviour.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 04, @08:17PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 04, @08:17PM (#1264962)

      Organized crime and political corruption can easily handicap those things. We need some kind of protection

  • (Score: 3, Informative) by Barenflimski on Thursday August 04, @04:43PM (4 children)

    by Barenflimski (6836) on Thursday August 04, @04:43PM (#1264930)

    Get Certs if you're a layman.
    Get a Masters degree if you want to grind at "higher levels."

    Working in a job year over year, might get you a 2% raise per year. A new cert can get you 10's of thousands in a new position right after you get it.

    • (Score: 4, Touché) by SomeGuy on Thursday August 04, @05:55PM (3 children)

      by SomeGuy (5632) on Thursday August 04, @05:55PM (#1264943)

      Of course those fancy certifications, which often don't teach you anything you don't already know, cost lots and lots of money. More money than many can afford. And there is no absolutely guarantee that that cert will get you a job that even makes use of it.

      • (Score: 2, Touché) by krishnoid on Thursday August 04, @06:31PM

        by krishnoid (1156) on Thursday August 04, @06:31PM (#1264946)

        But what about those entirely valid certifications or even degrees from Trump University? Or even more highly-credentialed institutions []?

      • (Score: 2) by Opportunist on Thursday August 04, @08:01PM

        by Opportunist (5545) on Thursday August 04, @08:01PM (#1264960)

        You know and I know, but if you tell HR I'll strangle you.

      • (Score: 2) by Barenflimski on Thursday August 04, @08:47PM

        by Barenflimski (6836) on Thursday August 04, @08:47PM (#1264969)

        True and True.

        Regardless. If the cost is the same as one years raise, $10k+ every year for the rest of your life, ads up quick, and quickly pays for itself.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 04, @05:12PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 04, @05:12PM (#1264935)

    Captain Obvious.

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by Runaway1956 on Thursday August 04, @07:05PM

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Thursday August 04, @07:05PM (#1264951) Homepage Journal

      How many of us have asked about a job, only to find that we are "over qualified". Yeah, go ahead and learn new skills. Have all the skills in your arsenal possible. But, when you're talking to a potential employer, you only put the cards on the table that he needs to see. Absolutely NEVER allow that potential employer know that you are capable of replacing him. And, once hired, don't beat the asshole at golf, or basketball, or whatever he claims to be good at.

      There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
  • (Score: 5, Funny) by krishnoid on Thursday August 04, @05:32PM (1 child)

    by krishnoid (1156) on Thursday August 04, @05:32PM (#1264939)

    What's the low road, then? Having dirt on the C-suite? I'm brainstorming here.

    • (Score: 2) by Opportunist on Thursday August 04, @08:03PM

      by Opportunist (5545) on Thursday August 04, @08:03PM (#1264961)

      When it comes to going from rags to riches, at the current time nothing beats the lottery. A new millionaire every week, work just can't compete with that.

      As an alternative, find some rich guy, jump in front of his car and sue for damages.