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Improvements in Electronic Job Alerts and the Labour Market Experience of Unemployed Workers: Evidence from the Connecting Canadians with Available Jobs Initiative

Publication Date: 06/07/2020

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Canadian Public Policy

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Vera Brencic

Julie Dubois

Lucie Morin


In 2013, the Canadian government introduced improvements to its electronic Job Alerts notification service that emails job seekers about job openings posted on an online job board. The improvements included additional advertisements of the service and increases in the frequency and scope of notifications sent to subscribers. Using data on workers who lost their jobs either before or after the intervention, we find that subscription to Job Alerts increased after the intervention.

This finding is significant because we also find that, compared with non-subscribers, subscribers to Job Alerts spent more hours searching per week and were more likely to secure a permanent job after holding a contract job. We find little evidence of any improvements in the effects of subscription on job search outcomes after the enhancements. Our evidence suggests that the limited effects of this intervention might be due to subscribers’ failure to make use of the various enhancements.