Why You Should Consider Older Job Candidates

Julie Shenkman
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For candidates who are re-entering the job market or changing industries, finding jobs for older people can be a challenge. Many companies, particularly those in cutting-edge industries, actively seek younger employees. As a human resources professional, you can take advantage of the largely ignored base of older candidates to find experienced, qualified people who will benefit your organization.


For human resources professionals, offering jobs for older people may seem like a risky proposition. After all, older candidates are usually more experienced, which translates to higher salary requirements. According to MarketWatch, age discrimination is not expected to fade as the baby boomer generation gets older. In fact, MarketWatch states that older employers are just as likely as younger employers to demonstrate age bias.


If you are in charge of hiring at your company, older job seekers can be a valuable—and largely untapped—resource. When other companies shy away from providing jobs for older people, it leaves more high-quality candidates on the market. Instead of fighting with other business owners over the most exciting young candidates, and exhausting your resources in the process, you can choose from a large group of experienced people. Offering employment for seniors can widen your candidate pool, making the hiring process more pleasant and less frustrating.


From a human resources standpoint, older candidates offer numerous benefits for companies. Younger employees may leave to take the next step up the career ladder, pursue educational opportunities, or be closer to family, which can result in high turnover and high training expenses. Older people, on the other hand, are more likely to be settled into a specific area, particularly if they have put down roots. By offering employment for seniors, you can create stability for your company.


The most obvious advantage that mature people have over younger job candidates is experience. When your company provides jobs for older people, you can benefit from their years of experience in the industry. Those with 25 years of work history have likely been exposed to successes and failures, a quality that makes them better able to spot potential problems and identify good ideas. Older employees are often more experienced, professionally and personally, which enables them to speak knowledgably to a wide range of customers.


Internally, older employees can bring valuable wisdom to your team. Because they have been exposed to a wide range of on-the-job situations, they can provide guidance and mentorship within your organization. While younger employees are often guided by idealism and enthusiasm, older staff members understand the realities of the business world. This blend of enthusiasm and experience can be an important asset to your business. By offering jobs for older people, you can create a well-rounded, balanced team.


As you consider adding older candidates to your hiring pool, it is important to consider how they will benefit your organization. By offering jobs for older people, you can take advantage of experienced, wise professionals who can help give your company staying power.


Photo courtesy of stockimages / freedigitalphotos.net


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