October 1999

IZA DP No. 67: Behavioral Effects of Probation Periods: An Analysis of Worker Absenteeism

Regina T. Riphahn, Anja Thalmaier

published in: Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik, 2001, 221(2), 179-201;
see IZA Reprints 86/01

The theoretical probation literature shows that individuals have incentives to mimick "good workers" during periods of employment probation. This study empirically tests at the example of absence behavior, whether such behavioral responses to the incentives of probation periods exist. We find significant responses of white collar employees and public sector workers to probation periods: Once individuals enter into regular employment and employment probation is completed, the probability of work absences takes discrete jumps and is significantly above previous levels.