The Effects of Work-Life Policies: Teleworking and Paid Family Leave
thesisposted on 01.08.2019, 00:00 by Chia Jung Chang
This thesis examines the effects of two work-life policies: the 2010 Telework Enhancement Act and the 2004 California Paid Family Leave Program. The first chapter, "Does Working from Home Reduce Turnover? Evidence from the Telework Enhancement Act," and the second chapter, "Moving Up the Ladder: Impact of Working from Home on Career Mobility," both study federal government employees' response to the Telework Enhancement Act to measure willingness to work from home; but the first chapter estimates the causal effect of teleworking on job turnover, while the second chapter estimates the causal effect of teleworking on promotion to a higher grade level. In both chapters, I compare changes in teleworking rates and the out- come between agencies required by this law to provide a telework policy and agencies that are exempt. Differences-in-differences estimates reveal that an agency offering a telework policy leads to a decrease in turnover rates of 8.9 percentage points in the three years after the Act and an increase in career mobility by 0.26 grade levels in the six years after the Act. My estimates im- ply that choosing to telework reduced the probability of leaving an agency by 13.7 percentage points in the three years after the Act and increased getting promoted by 0.54 grade levels in the six years after the Act. Lastly, the third chapter, "Is the Road to Unemployment Paved with Good Intentions?: Labor Market Outcomes of Young Women," examines how the employment and wages of women of childbearing age change relative to young men and older women in response to the California Paid Family Leave Program. Exploiting variation in paid family leave access across industries, I find the program decreases employment for young women by approximately 0.5% compared to young men and 0.3% compared to older women. Furthermore, I find no change in wages between young men and women, however, younger women experience a 0.2% decrease in wages relative to older women.