"It is predicted that employers will need to fill an estimated 13.5 million job vacancies in the next 10 years, but only 7 million young people will leave education over this period." Mature workers have a vast network of contacts and a wealth of industry knowledge and by 2020 36% of the working population will be over 50. Despite this, many companies are failing to act and by doing so, says the CIPD, "they put at risk their own competitiveness".
Retention rates are higher amongst older workers, and their lack of family responsibilities and desire to retire slowly make them ideal candidates for part-time or on-demand work schedules. Bill Coleman of retirementjobs.com also states that for people in the last third of their working lives, "work is about human interaction and community." This makes older workers ideal for customer service and retail roles.
The key to unlocking this vast talent pool is adjusting recruitment practices to allow for the diversity of what older workers bring to the table. A CIPD report, released in April, suggests that current hiring practices focus too much on qualifications over experience. Older workers are more likely to have learned skills on the job, and should be given the chance to explain any lack of formal education. Video interviewing provides an ideal platform for them to do just that.
Video interviewing also gives older workers a chance to prove that they are not afraid of new technologies and remain willing to learn new skills. It is another misconception that older workers are harder to train: the CIPD found that fewer than 1 in 10 older workers refused training when it was offered. Video interviewing can weed out the unwilling minority.
Ultimately, older workers want to work: 54% of older workers aged over 55 plan to work beyond the state pension age. When it comes to older workers, as Dianah Worman concludes, "it is in the interests of employers to sit up and take notice and lose no time in taking appropriate action."
How are you reacting to the ageing workforce?
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