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What makes an employer age-friendly?
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What makes an employer age-friendly?

This piece is part of a longer, crowd-sourced series about what "age-friendly" means and looks like in different contexts.  This time, we asked respondents: what would make an employer age-friendly, from their perspective? Below is a synthesis of the most common answers.

Respect for Experience

  • An employer who values all your life experiences and what you have learned from those experiences and maybe even any mistakes and values that along with all your wisdom
  • Someone who thinks your experience adds value to their company and pays you your worth
  • They recognize the value of life's experience as knowledge acquired that can't be received in any school or classroom and that the work ethics and skills have value also
  • I think that they know that older employees are reliable and responsible.
  • Taking advantage of the wealth of knowledge and experience that older potential employees can contribute to the employer.
  • Willing to recognize that people over age 65 have a great deal of experience and expertise.  
  • Sometimes a more mature worker is more reliable, knowledgeable and willing to learn new things plus bring maturity to the workplace.
  • They value the experience that an older person brings, and demonstrate an eagerness to employ a person with experience, and show a willingness to identify how that experience can be used to benefit the organization.

Patient and Accommodating

  • Willing to give a senior citizen a chance to learn computers and different apps. The employer knows that the older a person gets the slower they are with more aches and pains.
  • A willingness to accommodate an elderly person if the person needs the accommodation--a flexible schedule, shorter work days, fewer work days--and to pay accordingly.
  • Willing to recognize that elderly may need a different work/life ratio
  • Making allowances for age related issues
  • Respects physical limitations, allows for regular breaks.
  • Allow for a slightly slower pace, not require travel, perhaps reduced hours, attention to ergonomics, ability to get up and move throughout the day, work from home.
Not Focused on Age
  • They are interested in your work ability, not your age
  • Work history...not age
  • That they look at a persons actions, not their age.
  • Attitude, eye contact, giving them as much responsibility and tough assignments as they would their younger employees, hiring based on ability and not age, etc.
  • One who sees each candidate as an individual, not a demographic.
  • An employer that only looks at your experience and qualifications and doesn't consider your age when hiring.

Other Older Employees

  • Substantial percentage of staff are seniors
  • When senior management is older. Looking for experience.
  • Seeing other older people on their staff
  • Equal number of employees in each age group

Hiring and Firing

  • Does not fire/downsize older employee because they earn more.
  • Not considering how close someone seems to retirement when opportunities for career enhancement arise.  
  • He/she looks at everyone who applies and verifies their skill set.  You are not rejected immediately because they don't like the year you graduated from high school. 
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Comments (1)

I'm finding that employers are carefully trying to find out what my age is.

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