Hiring Older Workers – What are the Benefits?

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In July 2014 the government announced changes to legislation to help those over fifty to stay in work or if necessary to re-enter a profession. Many leave work too early which often leaves them in financial difficulty, as well as affecting the economy and society as a whole. So why is it important for you to hire older workers and how can they benefit your business?

What you need to know.

It’s important to remember that sixty isn’t old anymore – the average life expectancy of someone in the UK is now 81. Many people are working later in life because they enjoy it and want to, not just for financial reasons. The default retirement age has now been removed which means people don’t feel obliged to leave and companies cannot wrongly dismiss someone who is still perfectly good at their job. This is a great opportunity for businesses as you could be prematurely losing talent from your workforce and also spending more on recruitment than is needed.

Why should you hire/hold on to older applicants?

Dedication & Loyalty:
Due to having more experience in different jobs and understanding the importance of their work, the older generation are often more dedicated, show more loyalty to their company and also take a lot of pride in their work. You will often find them staying behind to finish their tasks. Simple things that are expected of an employee but are not always present such as punctuality, honesty and a focused attitude can often be found in more experienced workers.

Wealth of Experience:
They have the advantage of understanding the importance of having their job with regards to the financial benefits but they are also experienced enough to be more resilient when a problem arises. As well as work experience they also have more life experience so understand how to maintain a work-life balance. They can be easier to train as they are used to following instructions and this makes them a good example for younger employees. Through their different experiences they can often bring a wealth of ideas from other workplaces and they have the confidence to share these recommendations in order to benefit your company.

Health & State of Mind:
Surprisingly their health is actually often better than their younger colleagues. A 2012 AARP survey conducted with Americans aged 35-80 found that happiness and health actually increased with age. Other surveys have also found that adults over 65 report lower levels of depression and other mental problems.Studies also suggest that older workers are the more satisfied and engaged with their jobs which is good news for the employer as this in turn leads to better productivity and a good atmosphere in the workplace.

So when you are recruiting remember that the best candidate might be someone who has maybe had a small break from the world of work or is older than the other applicants. The reality is, they can be more beneficial to your business and holding on to your older workers can enable you to retain your talent for longer as well as save money on recruitment costs.