NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
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Lizi Yu

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: University of California at Santa Barbara

NBER Working Papers and Publications

August 2019How Costly is Turnover? Evidence from Retail
with Peter J. Kuhn: w26179
We estimate turnover costs in small retail sales teams using daily sales data and an advance notice requirement to address endogeneity concerns. In addition to short-staffing and onboarding costs, we identify two less familiar sources of turnover costs: incumbent workers’ recruitment activities, and reductions in team morale after a departure is announced. Our estimates of total turnover costs are relatively modest, however: Ten percent higher turnover is about as costly as a 0.6% wage increase. We attribute these low costs to a set of complementary personnel policies which ensure that only 25 percent of departures result in a short-staffing spell.
 
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