This blog was contributed by Joanne Sawyer, Policy Adviser at Age UK
An ageing population, the end of forced retirement and a rising State Pension age, mean that there are now more older workers (those aged 50 or over) in the jobs market. This trend is projected to increase over the next decade – between 2012 and 2022 there will be an extra 3.7 million workers aged between 50 and State Pension age. Alongside this, given population changes, there will be fewer younger people entering work. Employers and recruiters consequently need to embrace the ageing demographic of the workforce.
Working life for the over 50s
However, although the overall increase in employment rates among older workers is welcome, it does not tell the full story of working life for the over 50s. Perceptions and stereotypes of older workers – usually negative – are still firmly held, and challenging these is vital for individuals, employers and society. They affect the way that older workers are treated when in work (e.g. in accessing training or promotion opportunities) and when out of work (e.g. long-term unemployment is a particular problem for the over 50s, with 44% of those who are unemployed having been out of work for over a year, compared to 32.0% for all 16-64 year olds). Ensuring that older workers are not forced out of the labour market, and providing appropriate support to those who find themselves unemployed, remains crucial if we are to avoid storing up social problems for the future.
A Best Practice Guide for Recruiters
Age UK believes that it is in everyone’s interests for people to be able to remain in work for as long as they desire and are capable of doing so, and that no-one should be disadvantaged because of their age. This is why we have partnered with the Recruitment and Employment Confederation to produce a best practice guide for recruiters.
- Understand the benefits of recruiting older workers and promote the business case for employing this age group to clients.
- Look beyond the stereotypes.
- Provide information, advice and training to recruitment staff to help them understand and overcome the barriers faced by older jobseekers.
- Be mindful of the language used in job adverts.
- Seek to use a diverse range of platforms to advertise jobs.
- Designate an internal advocate for older people.
- Forge links wherever possible with welfare-to-work providers and Jobcentre Plus.
We call on all recruiters and employers to look beyond an individual’s age and make best use of the available skills and expertise of all workers.
Read the best practice guide for recruiters
Read consumer advice about employment on the Age UK website
Posted in Business, Employment, Work and Learning
Tagged A Best Practice Guide for Recruiters Age UK, A Best Practice Guide for Recruiters Age UK and REC, Age Opportunity A Best Practice Guide for Recruiters, Age UK, Age UK blog, Ageing, ageing population, ageing society, older jobseekers, older people, older people employment, older worker, older workers Age UK, older workers seeking employment, Recruitment, Recruitment and Employment Confederation
This week’s blog from our General Election Series highlights the significant role older people play in society. Our ambition for the next Parliament is a world where everyone can participate in society and be valued for their contribution.
Older people make a huge contribution to society, going well beyond what is widely recognised. Age UK has previously estimated that all the work, caring and volunteering done by the over 65s adds up to a huge contribution of £61 billion to the economy.
But it’s about far more than just the hard economic value – being able to take an active part in society can make a huge difference to the lives of older people themselves, their friends and relatives, and everyone else too.
It is therefore extremely important that this contribution is fully recognised, and to make sure that barriers preventing people engaging in their community, accessing local services or going online, are tackled, so that everyone who chooses to do so can participate. Continue reading
Posted in Campaigning, Communities and inclusion, Employment, General Election 2015, Government, Work and Learning
Tagged #GeneralElection2015, #votelaterlife, A great place to grow older, a great place to grow older Age UK, Age UK, Age UK blog, Age UK General Election campaign, Ageing, ageing population, ageing society, contribution of older people, contribution of older people to society, older carers, older people, older people volunteering, older workers
Defining what makes an ‘adequate’ retirement income is always going to be tricky. It’s inherently difficult to know exactly what people’s spending choices and needs are likely to be, or how they will adjust to stopping work.
Add in the changing nature of retirement, where increasing numbers of people are working past their State Pension age, it becomes even harder.
New paper, new ideas?
The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) recently published a paper investigating a new method of looking at retirement incomes. It identifies an ‘optimum’ level of pension saving for each couple household. Instead of income band, this is based on a range of personal circumstances (e.g. number of children) and an
assessment of spending patterns. It then evaluates whether people have saved below, at, above or the ‘optimal’ level required to achieve a comparable standard of living for their retirement. Continue reading
This blog was contributed by Chris Ball, Chief Executive of TAEN – The Age and Employment Network
1st October – UK Older People’s Day and the UN International Day of Older Persons – saw the launch of a petition against age discrimination in the labour market. With age discrimination in employment made unlawful in the UK since 2006, it may come as a surprise to learn that this is needed, yet age discrimination in the job recruitment process seems to be a common experience.
The idea for the petition – led by TAEN – The Age and Employment Network – came after increasing evidence that age discrimination carries on regardless when people are recruited into new jobs.
The problem is that age discrimination in recruitment is very hard to prove. So long as we have not eradicated ageist attitudes these can be expressed in the hidden, sometimes unconscious, always irrational prejudices of recruiters. Continue reading
Posted in Campaigning, Employment, Work and Learning
Tagged age discrimination, Age UK, Age UK blog, Ageing, ageing population, ageing society, Chris Ball TAEN, Employment, International Day of Older Persons, labour market, older jobseekers, older people, petition against age discrimination in the labour market, Recruitment, TAEN, TAEN’s Survey of Jobseekers, The Age and Employment Network, work and learning