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HR Policies and Maternal Labor Supply

The Example of Employer-Supported Childcare

Series:

Susanne Schneider

The author asks how far the extension of employer-supported childcare serves as a driver for higher maternal labor supply. She addresses this question by categorizing employer-supported childcare as an efficiency wage introduced by the employer to increase the working volume of mothers. Applying various impact evaluation techniques in an econometric analysis, the author concludes that the availability of employer-supported childcare has a positive impact on the length and working volume of mothers who return back to work after giving birth. Furthermore, the usage of employer-supported childcare by mothers with pre-school age children influences the amount of agreed and actual working hours positively.

 

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6. Results: Describing the Changes due to ESCC

← 134 | 135 →

6.  Results: Describing the Changes due to ESCC

The subsequent chapter describes the results divided into three main sections. Firstly, it addresses the length of absence and extend of returning to work in relation to ESCC. Secondly, the working volume of mothers with young children is investigated. The first section within each part presents predominantly descriptive statistics with a focus on differences between mothers with and mothers without access to ESCC. Afterwards, the impact evaluation shows whether there exists a causal impact between the behavior of mothers and the provision of ESCC.

6.1  Effects of ESCC on return-to-job after giving birth

6.1.1  Descriptive statistics

The following section provides an overview of the situation of the mothers at the time of giving birth. During the complete time period, 1578 mothers gave birth. Around four percent of the mothers were working in a company with ESCC just before giving birth.

The socio-demographic characteristics of the sample are as follows: 74 percent of the mothers without ESCC are married. The treatment group has here a corresponding value of 77 percent. The mean age is 31 years of age for the control group and 33 years for the treatment group. The individual income of the treatment group is with around EUR 1.500 net per month slightly higher compared to the control group. The household income of the treatment group is around EUR 3700 net per month, which is remarkably higher compared to the control group with EUR 2800 net per month.

Concerning the cultural and ethical background, again, similar tendencies can be observed: While 82 percent of the members of the treatment group live in former West Germany, 86 percent of the control group participants are from this area. The majority of the treatment group’s members (95 percent) have a German background and 87 percent of the control group members have this nationality.

With regard to hypothesis related variables, the following observations can be made: The qualification is higher when ESCC is provided. In the treatment group, 49 percent have a tertiary education and 51 percent have a vocational education. In comparison, the control group inhabits 13 percent with no or a low education, 64 percent with a vocational education and 23 percent with a tertiary education.

The indicator of company-specific human capital shows the following distribution within distinct variables: The individuals are employed on average for 3.5 years at the same employer in the treatment group, which is twice as high as compared to the control group. The treatment group members perceive generally higher degrees of autonomy compared to the control group individuals. The third variable, position in the company, reveals that 83 percent of the treatment group members have ← 135 | 136 → a position as foreman, team leader, executive, or highly qualified civil servant, as managerial, or qualified professional staff. The same number is around 17 percent for the control group.

With regard to the distribution over the economic sectors, the following table reveals that in both group most of the mothers are working in the manufacturing sector. However, the amount is in the control group nearly twice as high as in the treatment group.

Table 6-1: Distribution of observations in economic sectors before giving birth

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Source: FiDv4.0, own calculation

Over 98 percent of the control group members do not use any other family-friendly HR policies. In comparison, above 15 percent of the mothers in the treatment group use at least one kind of family-friendly HR policy. Similarly, 90 percent of the control group members do not perceive their direct supervisor as supportive, while 75 percent of the treatment group members do. However, the overwhelming majority of the control group (91 percent) do not have flexible working arrangements. This proportion is nearly even in the treatment group. Concerning irregular working time (for instance in the night or at the weekend), around 80 percent of the control group members have no irregular working time compared to 34 percent in the treatment group.

The following variables are subjective assessments of the mothers. Starting with the perceived time pressure, both groups have a value of approximately three out of ten. Similarly, the results on gaining reputation are with four out of ten in both groups relatively equal. The satisfaction with the salary reveals different results: Here, the treatment groups shows with a value of seven out of ten a far higher satisfaction than the control group with four points out of 10 points.

In sum, the descriptive statistics hint that the mothers working in a company with ESCC have a higher education and enjoy a more family-friendly work environment compared to the control group. The differences in the personal and working environment between both groups illustrate the importance of applying impact evaluation methods to identify the real impact of ESCC on the work behavior. Otherwise, it could be assumed that these third factors bias the relationship. ← 136 | 137 →

6.1.2  Impact evaluation: Effects of ESCC on time of return-to-job after giving birth

The Kaplan-Meier survival curve shows the survival function, which captures the probability that the person will survive beyond a specified time. In this context, survival refers to the time of not working and it ends for a person when she starts working again. The following graph shows the survival function for the survival probability of returning to work in dependence on the provision of ESCC at the time of birth.

Figure 6-1: Kaplan-Meier survival estimates when ESCC is available at time of giving birth

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Source: Own design

The lighter grey line in this graph shows the survival function of mothers whose employer provides ESCC. The lighter grey line is throughout the time period below the darker grew line. The survival of not being employed ends earlier for women in the treatment group. Hence, mothers, who gave birth while being employed in a company with ESCC, return earlier to work compared to mothers, who gave birth while working in a company without ESCC.

Around three months after childbirth, around 25 percent of mothers from the treatment group are employed while four percent of the control group are employed. A steep increase in employment rates can be observed after twelve months for both groups, which might be due to the end of the parent’s money, which has a reference period of twelve months. The steep increase after 14 months might be explained due to the extended reference period for single mothers and for mothers, whose partner is also having two months off. Around 24 months after childbirth, nearly 75 percent of the treatment group mothers and 47 percent of the control group mothers are ← 137 | 138 → employed. It should be noted that the observed employability does not address the volume of working, but ‘if’ a mother is working. Furthermore, it is important to state that these statistics are descriptive, hence they do not imply causality.

The subsequent table contains the coefficient estimations for the decision to work after childbirth. Please note that the dependent variables are a combination of the decision to return to work after childbirth and the duration of the survival analysis. The coefficients are time-unrelated and include both the time of the return-to-work as well as the decision to do so itself. The separation of both effects combined in the coefficient is not possible (Cleves et al., 2016). Variables without significant coefficients are neglected in the subsequent description of the results.

Table 6-2: Regression results on duration and return-to-job after childbirth

  Return-to-job after childbirth
  CoefficientStandard error
Availability ESCC2.224753*.9669382
Hypothesis-related variables    
Firm-specific human capital-.0092869.0361705
Interaction firm-specific HC x ESCC-.1196753.086154
Reference: Health and education sector    
Public sector.2416207.1847729
Interaction public sector x ESCC-.113151.455961
Knowledge-intensive sector.2613164.1350024
Interaction knowledge-intensive sector x ESCC-.0438698.303368
Service sector.2363231.1314
Interaction service sector x ESCC-.385352.3082223
Perceived supervisory support.3260301***.0976912
Interaction perceived supervisory support x ESCC-.1567858.2370771
Family-friendly HR policies.3128591**.0980556
Interaction family-friendly HR policies x ESCC-.1635736.2331002
Flexible working arrangement.3845081***.1146492
Interaction flexible working arrangement x ESCC.0801794 .2438252
Gaining reputation-.2134184**.0698463
Interaction gaining reputation x ESCC.2306766.1480373
Irregular working time1.179586***.147979 ← 138 | 139 →
Interaction irregular working time x ESCC-1.32901***.2419296
Satisfaction with salary.0664978***.0145993
Interaction satisfaction with salary x ESCC-.0891363.0646323
Further controls    
Individual income (log).082719.0734169
Household income (log).1243615.0943216
East-West (1=West)-.2380389**.0913489
Migration (1=migration background).4004257**.1369955
No. of subjects24205  
No. of failures630  
Time at risk1337  
Wald chi2(25)916.44  
Prob > chi20.0000  
Significance tests: * p<0.05, ** p<0.01, *** p<0.001

Source: Fidv4.0, own calculation

The availability of ESCC has a positive and significant impact on the decision to return back to work after childbirth. While the coefficient of the firm-specific human capital and its interaction with the availability of ESCC appears to have negative elements it should not be overrated due to its insignificance and the size of the standard error.

The three economic sectors included in this model all show positive, but insignificant coefficients, while the interaction terms are all negative and insignificant. It is noteworthy that all economic sector variables have the same sign in dependence on their reference category, the health and education sector.

It seems that perceived organizational support by the direct supervisor seems to be highly significant and positively related to the time and decision to return to work. However, the interaction with ESCC is not significant and negative. The impact of perceived supervisory support is not dependent on the provision of ESCC.

The same interpretation holds true for the usage of family-friendly HR policies. Flexible working arrangement show similar results, however with a positive interaction term.

The hypothesis on gaining reputation cannot be supported here: An increase in the importance of gaining reputation from work is associated with a decrease in the ← 139 | 140 → likelihood of returning to work. The corresponding interaction term is insignificant. This result is contradicting to the theoretical implications.

Concerning the irregular working time, the following interpretation can be made: While irregular working time seems to be positively and highly significantly related to the return to work, the interaction with ESCC reveals the opposite. Hence, this hypothesis cannot be supported, rather the opposite seems to hold true.

Furthermore, it can be observed, the higher the individuals are satisfied with their salary, the more likely they are returning earlier back to work. The result is highly significant, while the associated interaction terms is not significant.

With regard to the control variables, both variables in regards to income are insignificant and positive. Mothers living in former West Germany are less likely to return to work than mothers residing in former East Germany. Mothers with a background from non-German countries are more likely to return to work. This results is contradicting to previous literature (Wagner, 2012), but might be explained due to the aggregated usage of other nationalities. A distinct consideration of the national background would probably lead to some positive and some negative influences.

6.1.3  Impact evaluation: Effects of ESCC on extent of return-to-job after giving birth

While the previous analysis has focused on the difference between working and not working, this part will be dedicated to the kind of return to work after childbirth. Thereby, it will be differentiated between marginal, part-time, and full-time employment. Hence, non-working mothers are neglected in this analysis. Introducing this topic, the following figure contains the working status after childbirth differentiated between ESCC available and no ESCC available at the time of giving birth.

Table 6-3: Working status in months after childbirth with availability of ESCC

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Source: Fidv4.0, own calculations ← 140 | 141 →

With regard to the treatment group, the figure on the left reveals that around three months after childbirth roughly one percent of mothers is again working full-time, three percent are working part-time and 96 percent are marginally employed. The amount of marginal employed mother’s decreases as time progresses. Simultaneously, the amount of mothers working part-time and full-time increases constantly, however the increase in part-time work is on a higher pace. Approximately twelve months after childbirth, the distribution is as follows: Around five percent are working full-time, twelve percent are working part-time, and 75 percent are marginally employed. With time, full-time employment levels out at about twelve percent, part-time employment increases consistently, while marginal employment decreases simultaneously.

In contrast, the control group perceives a slightly different development. Here, approximately 97 percent of the mothers are marginal employed, one percent part-time and two percent full-time three months after giving birth. As well as for the treatment group, the high share of marginal employed mother’s declines over time, however, compared to the treatment group, on another level: the proportion of part-time employment increases to a substantially smaller degree compared to the treatment group. Furthermore, the share of full-time employed individuals increases on a higher level compared to the treatment group, but starts at a later point in time. In summary, it seems that the availability of ESCC promotes part-time employment on costs of marginal employment.

The next table contains the results of CRM. It contains the three types of employment when returning to work. Thereby, they are regarded as competing events since just one of them can happen first.

Starting with marginal employment, the main variable of interest, the availability of ESCC, is not significant. Nearly all hypothesis-related predictors do not seem to have significant influence on the decision to work in a marginal employment relationship. One exception concerns flexible working arrangements: women without flexible working arrangements are less likely to have a minijob after childbirth compared to women with flexible working arrangements. The interaction term is not significant and positive.

However, the control variables seem to be influential here: a higher age is associated with a decrease in the likelihood of pursuing marginal employment. A lower income is significantly related to the likelihood of working in a minijob after giving birth. Furthermore, there is a higher possibility of having a marginal employment status when a mother is born in former West Germany. ← 141 | 142 →

Table 6-4: Regression results of CRM

image37 ← 142 | 143 →

image38

Significance tests: * p<0.05, ** p<0.01, *** p<0.001, empty cells: not included due to results of pretests

Source: FiDv4.0

Continuing with part-time employment, the availability of ESCC has a positive and significant influence on the decision to work part-time after childbirth. Having a vocational education and the associated interaction term with ESCC does not reveal significant results. Working in the manufacturing sector and the associated interaction have a positive and significant influence in reference to working in the health and education sector. Having flexible working arrangements as well as the subsequent interaction with ESCC do not reveal significant results either. With regard to salary satisfaction, a positive and significant influence can be found both for the variable itself as well as for the depended interaction with ESCC. Furthermore, a ← 143 | 144 → positive, significant effect can be identified for perceived supervisory support as well as for the usage of HR policies. The interaction terms with ESCC is not significant and negative for both variables.

Regarding the other control variables, there are three significant variables. Firstly, it seems that a higher age is related to working part-time after childbirth. Secondly, the individual income is positively associated with the likelihood of working part-time. Thirdly, having a non-German background exerts a positive influence on part-time employment.

With regard to full-time employment, the main variable of interest, availability of ESCC, does not seem to have a significant influence on the decision to work in full-time employment. The coefficient reveals a negative sign however, with an even larger standard error compared to the coefficient itself. This result should be approached very carefully. While vocational education itself does not inhabit a significant influence, the associated interaction term is positively significant. Similar to the part-time employment status, it seems that employees in the manufacturing sector have a higher probability of working full-time in reference to the health and education sector. Contrary to the analysis on part-time analysis, the subsequent interaction term is here not significant. Likewise, the usage of HR policies seems to be positively and significantly related to the likelihood of returning to work in full-time modus. Further hypothesis-related variables are not significant.

Again, the individual control variables seem to be relevant: a higher individual income is significantly related to a return in full-time employment after childbirth. In relation to this, the income of the partner inhabits a significant coefficient as well, however in the opposite direction.

6.1.4  Interim conclusion

Before the working behavior with young children will be approached in the next section, a short conclusion will be drawn. The results of the questions revealed, that it seems that the provision of ESCC for pregnant employees has a small positive but significant impact on the decision to return to work. While the interactions of the hypothesis-related variables overwhelmingly did not have a significant impact, the variables itself had. It seems that the working environment including the perceived supervisory support, usage of HR policies, flexible working arrangements, irregular working time or the satisfaction with the salary are explanatory for the return to work. Having a closer look at the extent of returning to work, just the model on part-time employment seems to be significant. Likewise, it seems that the working environment itself seems to be more relevant than the interactions with ESCC. ← 144 | 145 →

6.2  Effects of ESCC on working volume of mothers with young children

6.2.1  Descriptive statistics

This section explores the sample and will differentiate between mothers whose employer offers ESCC, mothers who use it, and mothers who do not have access to it at all. The first group is included in the latter analysis, since several authors investigated that even the provision of family-friendly HRM can affect the working behavior of employees. Furthermore, it is differentiated between mothers, who are directly affected by ESCC (for instance if their employer offers it) and mothers, who indirectly benefit from it (for instance if the employer of their partner offers it).

With regard to the direct effect, around 15 percent of the sample have an employer who is offering ESCC in the first year. This number raises continuously to 16 percent in the following year, 17 percent in the third year and 19 percent in the fourth year of the observed time period. On the contrary, the usage of ESCC is approximately consistent over the years. While five percent of the observed use ESCC in the first two years, six percent use it in the third year. In the fourth year, again around five percent of the sample group make use of ESCC.

Around seven percent of the mothers have a partner whose employer is offering ESCC in the first year. This amount increases constantly to eight percent in the second year, nine percent in the third year and eleven percent in the fourth year. The amount is substantially smaller compared to the directly affected mothers. The observation is also valid for the usage of ESCC, as the percentage of mothers who have a partner using ESCC, which stays between two and three percent.

A closer description of the sample will be provided in the next lines. Thereby, the focus is on mothers who personally usage ESCC compared to mothers who do not have access to ESCC at all, since this is the main specification. Starting with the hypothesis-related variables, around two percent of the mothers using ESCC have no or a low education, 62 percent have a vocational education, and 37 percent have a tertiary education. With regard to the mothers without ESCC, around five percent have no education, 73 percent have a vocational education, and 22 percent have a tertiary education. Concerning the indicator on firm-specific human capital, the average number of years working for a company is at around six years for both groups. The treatment group members have a generally lower degree of autonomy compared to the control group members. Furthermore, 42 percent of the control group members inhabit a high position in the company while 20 percent of the treatment group mothers have it. Hence, a clear trend between the three indicators cannot be observed here.

Concerning the usage of others kinds of HR policies, around six percent of the control group members use at least one kind of HR policy while 15 percent of the treatment group members use at least one policy.

The following table shows the distribution across the economic sectors: ← 145 | 146 →

Table 6-5: Distribution of mothers working in economic sectors when using ESCC

image39

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations

The table reveals that most members of the treatment group work in the manufacturing sector. The service sector is marked by the smallest amount of mothers working there. With regard to the control group, the manufacturing sector is likewise the greatest one in the distribution of this sample while the sector with the least amount of mothers is the knowledge-intensive sector.

Twenty-six percent of the treatment group members regard their direct supervisor as directly supportive while 44 percent of the control group members do. 57 percent of the treatment group members have flexible working arrangements while 70 percent of the control group members have it. Around 60 percent of the treatment group members have irregular working time while 27 percent of the control group members have it.

With regard to the variables on subjective perception, there are generally no substantial differences between the two groups: Concerning time pressure, the average value of the treatment group is four out of ten, while the average value of the control group is three out of ten. The importance of gaining a reputation from work accounts in both groups for three out of ten points. The satisfaction with salary levels is, in both groups, around six points.

Going on to the individual characteristics, 38 percent of the mothers using ESCC and 49 percent of the mothers without any access to ESCC are not married. The average age in the treatment group is 36 years and in the control group 38 years. The mean income is slightly higher in the treatment group with EUR 1,300 net per month compared to the control group with EUR 1,100. This distribution is also reflected in the household income. The distribution of living in former East or West Germany is approximately the same between both groups. 23 percent of the treatment group members and 17 percent of the control group members live in former East Germany. Around three percent of the treatment group and five percent of the control group members have a non-German background.

It appears there are no substantial differences between the human capital related variables and the subjective assessment variables between both groups. However, there seem to be differences regarding the working environment variables. It seems that the control group is marked by a more flexible and supportive working environment. ← 146 | 147 →

6.2.2  Direct impact on the mother

This section provides the results of the impact evaluation of ESCC on work behavior when the mother is directly affected. Thereby, firstly the results are presented focusing on the availability of ESCC and secondly on the usage of ESCC. In both cases, the control group consists of mothers whose employer does not offer it at all, meaning in both pre- and post-treatment period.

The following table includes the overview of the various estimations when ESCC is available to the mother.

Table 6-6: Estimations on working volume when ESCC is directly available for mothers

image40

Significance tests: * t>1.65, ** t>1.96, *** t>2.58

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations

Concerning the work hours per week, the table shows that there is a positive effect of the availability of ESCC on the work hours based on two distinct matching procedures. The results are however not significant and marked by high standard errors. The combinations with the DiD estimations do not reveal consist results and have large standard errors in relation to the size of the coefficient. Regarding the time devoted to work per day, all four estimations have a positive tendency. The PSM estimations are both highly significant and have small standard errors. The estimations of DiD estimations are however not significant and have large standard error.

Summing up, the regression results with the independent variables are not included and discussed here for both types of the dependent variable due to insignificance of the dependent variable in the DiD estimator. However, it should be highlighted that the results go for most of the specifications in the same direction. ← 147 | 148 →

The next table contains the results of the estimations for the usage of ESCC.

Table 6-7: Overview of estimations on working volume with direct effect of usage ESCC

image41

Notes: Significance tests: * t>1.65, ** t>1.96, *** t>2.58

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations

Starting with the work hours per week, all four estimations have positive estimations ranging from 1.37 hours to 2.42 hours with mostly smaller standard errors and partly significantly results. The same observation can be made for the time devoted to work per day. Here, the results range from 0.35 hours to 0.54 hours with likewise smaller standard errors and overwhelmingly significantly results. The generally smaller size of the coefficients can be explained due to the difference in the measurement scales of the dependent variable (day vs week).

Since the DiD models showed significant results, the following table contains the complete models with the DiD estimator in combination with PSM. The interaction term contains the results for the dependent variable and consists of a dummy variable indicating the pre-and post-treatment period and a dummy variable indicating the treatment and control group (Khandker et al., 2010). ← 148 | 149 →

Table 6-8: Regression estimations: direct effect, ESCC usage, agreed weekly working hours

image42

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations ← 149 | 150 →

Starting with the working hours per week, the OLS estimations are not significant, while the FE model shows significance. The focus of the analysis lies on the significant FE model. Nevertheless, for the purpose of validation of the FE model, the OLS results are described as well in the subsequent paragraph.

Vocational education, which has just been included in the OLS model in dependence on the results of the pretests, does not reveal significant results. The firm-specific human capital shows negative, but significant results in the OLS model, but insignificance in the FE model. The variable on family-friendly HR policies does not reveal significant results.

The FE model has two significant variables regarding the economic sector. While the knowledge-intensive sector has a negative coefficient, the service sector shows a positive coefficient. Both variables must be interpreted in reference to the health and education sector. The health and education sector seems to inhabit a positive influence in combination with ESCC on the agreed work hours per week in reference to the knowledge-intensive sector. In contrast, the health and education sector seems to have a negative relationship to agreed working hours in combination with ESCC in reference to the service sector. The last observation can be supported in the OLS model.

Flexible working arrangement shows insignificant and negative results in both models, implying that mothers without flexible working arrangements increase their labor supply more likely due to ESCC compared to mothers with flexible working arrangements. Concerning irregular working time, the insignificant coefficient in both models contains that mothers with irregular working times increase their working behavior more likely due to ESCC. Satisfaction with childcare shows inconsistent and insignificant results in both models. Furthermore, the perceived time pressure shows consistently positive results in the FE model. This implies that an increase in the perception of time pressure is associated with a higher working volume when the mother is using ESCC. Gaining reputation and satisfaction with salary shows highly positive and significant results in the OLS model, but not in the FE model.

With regard to the control variables, a higher income can be significantly related to higher working hours when using ESCC in the FE model. This observation can be supported in the OLS model. There is also a positive and significant relationship between the household income and the working hours, however on a far smaller level in the FE model, but not in the OLS model. The other variables do not contain significant results in both models. The following table investigates the results of the same specifications, but with a different outcome variable. Here, the effect will be analyzed in the time devoted to work per day.

Concerning the working hours per day, the following observations can be made: Both OLS as well as FE models have a significant dependent variable and their results can be meaningfully compared. Again, vocational education is just included in the OLS model revealing a negative impact on working hours per day in reference to higher education. Firm-specific human capital shows inconsistent and insignificant coefficients over both models. The coefficient of family-friendly HR policies is positive in both models. ← 150 | 151 →

Table 6-9: Regression estimations: direct effect, ESCC usage, actual daily working hours

image43

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations ← 151 | 152 →

Concerning the economic sectors, several consistencies between both models can be observed. Regarding the public sector, both estimations of the OLS and FE are significant and negative. The manufacturing sector shows a positive coefficient in the OLS model, meaning that it is positive compared to the health and education sector. Mothers working in the service sector reveal a positive and significant effect on the time devoted to work per day in reference to the health and education sector in the same model. This effect can also be found in the FE model, but it is not significant here. However, the direction of the coefficients is significant across both models of working hours per week and time devoted to work.

Similar to the models on working hours per week, the variables on flexible working arrangements are both negative and insignificant. Going on, the next significant variable in the OLS models irregular working time has a negative direction. This implies that mothers with irregular working time (for instance in the night or at the weekend) are negatively related to an increase in daily working time due to ESCC. While this observation is not significant in the FE model, it has at least the same direction. The satisfaction with childcare inhabits in both the FE and the OLS model a negative and insignificant coefficient. The coefficient approaches nearly zero in both cases, implying that a potential effect of childcare satisfaction can be neglected in this analysis. Similar to the models on working hours per week, time pressure reveals highly significant and positive results in both the OLS and FE model. The effect of time pressure on working hours is supported in various estimations. Furthermore, both model reveals significance for the effect of gaining reputation on working hours. Here, the coefficient is positive. The significant and negative sign of the coefficient for being satisfied with the childcare reveals that mothers with a one-unit increase in satisfaction with their salary increase their working hours. While the result is not significant in the FE model, is has nevertheless the same sign.

Concerning further controls, the individual income is again for both specifications positive and highly significant. However, in comparison to the results of the FE and OLS model, the coefficients are on a lower level. The coefficient of the household income is significant as well, but their coefficient goes in a negative direction in the OLS model. Furthermore, the martial status seems to be influential in the OLS model. Here, mothers who are not married are more likely to increase their working hours per day if they use ESCC.

6.2.3  Sensitivity tests on direct impact

The main specifications presented in the previous sections are based on the assumption of control groups which had in both pre and post period no access to ESCC. Since it might be also plausible to compare the working behavior to controls groups with mothers experiencing in both periods the availability or usage of ESCC, these results will be presented in the following analysis. The following table contains results for different specifications. ← 152 | 153 →

Table 6-10: Sensitivity results on direct impact of ESCC on maternal working behavior

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Notes: Significance tests: * t>1.65, ** t>1.96, *** t>2.58, just FE models are presented

Source: FiDv4.0

The table includes three different specifications. The first one is characterized by the fact that the availability of ESCC is introduced for the treatment group in the post-treatment period while it is available in both periods for the control group. No significant results can be found here. The second approximation deals with a treatment group which uses ESCC in the post-treatment period. The control group consists of members who use ESCC in both periods. Here, a positive and significant effect can be found. The third group inhabits that ESCC is available in the pre-treatment period and the mothers use it in the post-treatment area. In comparison, ESCC is provided in both periods to the control group. The effect is positively and highly significant here.

This table leads to two different conclusions: Firstly, merely the availability of ESCC does not influence the employment behavior of mothers significantly. Secondly, it seems that the usage of ESCC has the highest effect when ESCC was previously available but not used. The interpretation of these findings will be done in the next chapter.

6.2.4  Indirectly affected through the partner

This part of the empirical analysis shall investigate whether the provision and usage of ESCC to and by the partner is an influential factor for the employment behavior of the mothers. Therefore, the following table contains the effects of the availability of ESCC to the partner on the working hours of the mother. The control group consists of mothers having a partner whose employer does not provide ESCC. ← 153 | 154 →

Table 6-11: Estimations on working volume with indirect effect of available ESCC

image45

Notes: Significance tests: * t>1.65, ** t>1.96, *** t>2.58

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations

The estimations both for the working hours per week and the daily hours devoted to work inhabit mostly that there is a negative effect on the working behavior of mothers. However, the results are never significant and the size of the standard error is always far higher compared to the size of the coefficients. The results should not be interpreted in a meaningful way.

The following table contains the results regarding the influence when the father is actually using it.

Table 6-12: Overview of estimations on working volume with indirect effect of usage ESCC

image46

Notes: Significance tests: * t>1.65, ** t>1.96, *** t>2.58

Source: FiDv4.0, own calculations ← 154 | 155 →

With regard to the different estimations on the working hours per week, a range from -3.57 to 7.48 hours can be observed. Taking the size of the standard errors as well as the insignificance of the coefficients, the results do not seem to provide substantial information. The same conclusion can be made for the results regarding the daily working time.

6.2.5  Interim conclusion

The results on the working volume have revealed that in first instance the usage of ESCC has a positive and significant impact on the working behavior of mothers. The availability or the indirect effect through the partner have no significant impact on the working behavior. Regarding the factors which might be influential based on the theoretical framework, preliminarily working in the service sector and having time pressure show consistent results. The other variables have also significant results, however, they are not consistent over several estimations and need to be interpreted individually.

6.3  Validation of the results

This section shall shortly evaluate the here presented results within the outcomes of other studies. Thereby, it should be noted that a direct comparison is difficult due to the time span of the dataset. The data set covers a time span, which begins after the introduction of the parent’s money reform in 2007 and ends before the introduction of the parent’s money plus in 2015. Furthermore, the legal claim for childcare facilities for children being one-year-old has been in place after the data set expires. The time span as itself seems to be a distinctive factor as itself.

Section 2.3.3.2. “Outlook on employer-supported childcare” has revealed that the distribution of ESCC is rather small in Germany. According to this dataset, four percent of the individuals within the sample were working in companies offering ESCC before giving birth. This percentage is something higher compared to the two percent revealed in the previous section. However, the two percent focused explicitly on on-site childcare, while here an aggregation of different kinds of ESCC is taken into account.

Concerning the return-to-job, several other studies focused on the employment rates after the birth of the last child. For instance, in 2007, around 26 percent of the mother were working either full-time, part-time or marginal when the youngest child is twelve months old. The amount increases to 37 percent when the child is two years old and 52 percent if the child turns three years (BMFSFJ, 2008). The BMFSFJ (2012b) reported that around 40 percent of the mothers with a two-year-old child and 50 percent of the mothers with a three-year-old child were working in 2010 using the Microzensus. Focusing on the time span of the years 2007 to 2011 and using the SOEP, approximately 24 percent of the mothers are working ← 155 | 156 → one year after giving birth and around 49 percent are employed within three years after childbirth in former West Germany. Contrary, around 34 percent of mothers living in former East Germany were employed one year after giving birth and approximately 60 percent in the third year after giving birth (Drahs, Schneider, & Schrauth, 2015). These results are roughly in line with the here presented findings which said that around 23 percent of the mothers are working 12 months after giving birth, 50 percent 24 months after giving birth and 65 percent 36 months after giving birth.

With regard to the working volume, figure 2-9 reveals that approximately 54 percent of all mothers with children between two and three years are working in the year 2011. Thereby, eleven percent are working below 15 hours per week, 28 percent are working between 15 and 32 hours and 15 percent are working more than 32 hours. Within this sample, 12 percent of the mothers in the same year with children in the same age are working more than 32 hours, 27 percent are working between 15 and 32 hours and eleven percent are working less than 15 hours per week. Hence, about 50 percent of the mothers are working, which seems to be comparable to the results of figure 2-9. Moreover, the here presented results and outcomes from other studies show the same tendencies as the working volume as well as the proportion of employed mothers raises with the age of the children.

6.4  Conclusion

The different sections of this chapter demonstrated a positive effect of ESCC on the working behavior of mothers. However, it has been shown as well that this effect is not adoptable for employment relationships in general, but might be dependent on distinct working situations.

Regarding the return-to-job dimension, it seems that there are strong tendencies that merely the higher educated mothers with greater income and flexible working environment are employed in companies with ESCC. However, the impact evaluation did not prove that there is a causal impact in this essence. The same observation could not be made for the working volume. The following table contains an overview of the hypothesis, which can be clearly confirmed or rejected based on a significant coefficient. ← 156 | 157 →

Table 6-13: Overview of hypothesis analysis

HypothesisWork dimensionAnalysis
Company policy and administration
Mothers are more likely to increase their working behavior due to ESCC if they are working in manufacturing sectors
Return-to-jobConfirmed
Part-time returnConfirmed
Direct usageConfirmed
Mothers are less likely to increase their working behavior due to ESCC if they are generally working in the public sector.Direct usageRejected
Mothers are more likely to increase their working behavior due to ESCC if they are working in the service sector.Direct usageConfirmed
They are less likely to increase their working behavior ESCC if they are working in knowledge-based industries.Direct usageConfirmed
Factors in personal life
Mothers primarily working at irregular times are more likely to increase their employment rates due to ESCC.
Return-to-jobRejected
Direct usageRejected
Mothers who perceive their work as stressful and too demanding do less likely increase their employment rates due to ESCC.Direct usageRejected
Status
Mothers are more likely to increase their employment rates due to ESCC if they state that gaining reputation from their job is important for them.Direct usageConfirmed
Salary
The higher the satisfaction with the salary, the more likely a mother increases her employment rates due to ESCC.
Part-time returnConfirmed
Direct usageConfirmed

Some estimations highlighted that the existence or the usage of ESCC might not be essential itself, but the combination of other family-friendly working arrangements. A further finding concerns the kind of measurement of the dependent variable. It seems that the effect is more often significant for the time devoted to work per day, which included overtime as well. This could mean that the usage of ESCC does not increase the agreed working hours, but the working hours which are not necessarily part of the contract. ← 157 | 158 →