Networking the unemployed: Can policy interventions facilitate access to employment through informal channels?
|Title||Networking the unemployed: Can policy interventions facilitate access to employment through informal channels?|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2014|
|Journal||International Social Security Review|
It is widely known that informal contacts and networks constitute a major advantage when searching for a job. Unemployed people are likely to benefit from such informal contacts, but building and sustaining a network can be particularly difficult when out of employment. Interventions that allow unemployed people to effectively strengthen their networking capability could as a result be promising. Against this background, this article provides some hints in relation to the direction that such interventions could take. First, on the basis of data collected on a sample of 4,600 newly-unemployed people in the Swiss Canton of Vaud, it looks at the factors that influence jobseekers’ decisions to turn to informal contacts for their job search. The article shows that many unemployed people are not making use of their network because they are unaware of the importance of this method. Second, it presents an impact analysis of an innovative intervention designed to raise awareness of the importance of networks which is tested in a randomized controlled trial setting.