Difficulties in filling open job positions have been one of the most common challenges facing U.S. businesses in recent years. What can employers do to mitigate this challenge? In this paper, we study this question by analyzing time-to-fill (TTF) data for online job ads collected by Burning Glass Technologies. We use various pieces of job requirement information listed in these ads and study their relationships with TTF. First, we find that, after controlling for differences in MSA and occupation characteristics, demanding more education and requiring longer previous job experience are both associated with longer TTF. The two requirements also interact with each other. In particular, the effect of the experience requirement on TTF increases as higher education levels are required. Second, listing a larger number of desired skills (including both soft skills such as communication skills and technical skills such as Microsoft Office) tend to result in shorter TTF, at least up to a certain threshold. More skill listings might reflect the employer’s higher recruitment effort and allow applicants to direct their job search more effectively, thereby resulting in shorter TTF. Last, we also find some evidence that, for some types of jobs (routine and manual jobs), offering higher wages shortens TTF.

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