Online job search plays a central role in matching workers to jobs. The spectacular growth and scale of online job postings and website traffic suggests that the internet is now the primary platform for hiring and job search. Data from online job sites reveals the openings employers look to fill, the jobs workers search for and the salaries for different roles – all available in a timely manner and at a highly granular level.

As record employment levels in Ireland in 2019 put upward pressure on pay, we teamed up with the Central Bank of Ireland to look at data from Indeed’s Irish site and assess how salaries advertised in job postings respond to the relative balance between employer demand for workers and the supply of workers (‘labour market tightness’). We construct a new measure of tightness based on the number of clicks that each job posting receives. We show that advertised salaries are significantly higher in jobs where the supply of potential workers is low relative to demand. We find that healthcare, finance and engineering roles are among those that face the most acute shortage of candidates.

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