Working Paper

No Longer Qualified? Changes in the Supply and Demand for Skills within Occupations

Abstract: Using a novel database of 159 million online job postings, we examine changes in employer skill requirements for education and specific skillsets between 2007 and 2017. We find that upskilling—in terms of increasing demands for bachelor’s degrees as well as software skills—was a persistent trend among high-skill occupations, but either a temporary or non-existent phenomenon among middle-skill and low-skill occupations. We also find evidence that persistent upskilling in the high-skill sector contributed to greater occupational mismatch that remained elevated during the recovery from the Great Recession. In contrast, labor market mismatch had largely dissipated within the low-skill and middle-skill sectors by 2017.

Keywords: labor demand; skills; vacancies; unemployment; firm behavior;

JEL Classification: D22; E24; J23; J24; J64;

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Bibliographic Information

Provider: Federal Reserve Bank of Boston

Part of Series: Working Papers

Publication Date: 2019-10-01

Number: 20-3