ERIC Number: ED359337
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992
Are Skill Requirements Rising? Evidence from Production and Clerical Jobs. EQW Working Papers.
The research on the demand for skills in the U.S. economy is split over the issue of whether technological change has tended to increase or decrease job skill requirements. The question of whether job skill requirements have been rising is important to public policy debates concerning the skill gap, wage inequality, and the changing quality of jobs. Some researchers have attempted to use indirect measures of skill requirements, whereas others have used direct measures and have concentrated primarily on case studies. Neither approach is free of problems, however. A far better data source is job analysis. The job analysis measure developed by Hay Associates is similar to the Dictionary of Occupational Titles (DOT) measure and includes a series of variables that capture the autonomy and complexity of jobs with respect to areas such as know-how, problem solving, and accountability. The Hay technique of job analyses was used to study the changing skill requirements for production and clerical jobs. The results suggested support for highly significant skill increases in production jobs. The results for clerical jobs, on the other hand, varied significantly by function. Half the clerical jobs examined experienced significant increases in skill needs, whereas the other half experienced significant decreases. Appendices contain data on the Hay technique, a list of production job titles, and graphical analyses of eight jobs. (Contains 83 references.) (MN)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: National Center on the Educational Quality of the Workforce, Philadelphia, PA.
Note: Appendix A (two pages) is largely illegible.