If given the choice of hiring a 20 something or a 40 something, who has the advantages?
I recall a boss who did not want me to hire the "old lady" - ironically I fought for her and it turned out she had the exact same birthday-month, date and YEAR of my boss who made that comment. That was 25 years ago. I am now HER/HIS age and seeking permanent employment.
Is this still the case in today's marketplace?
My research indicates that it is actually worse for an older (and more experienced) person when seeking full time employment. I've also discovered that it depends on the type of work, location, etc. that will tip the advantage to either a younger or older worker or employed seeking a new job vs. unemployed seeking any job. I've discussed this very topic with others seeking employment and have found the 50+ are having a very difficult time, especially here in California with just over 12% unemployment. I believe it's who you know or connections you have that will give you the advantage for seeking employment.
It may not be in all areas of employment, but it still is in a lot of them. My husband found that out when he lost his job a few years ago. He was in his early 50's then, with years of experience under his belt, but who did they constantly hire instead of him?
The younger ones with less experience, who would also work for less pay.
And this was in the maintenance field, where you would think that they would want to have someone who actually had the experience and knowledge to fix safety issues, wouldn't you?
I am not even sure I want to post on this as its sticks right in my ..... yea, you got it. That 'Past It' stamp that the older folks receive is connected to a number of reasons that make older people feel obsolete.
Younger people, mainly 16 to 24, may live with their parents, so low paying trainee jobs are best suited and also many go for voluntary positions to get experience and worry about money later when paying bills is a must.
Trouble is there, employers know that and are happy to exploit this generative area of the workforce offering a cheap deal for their staffing solutions. An older guy with bills up to his neck pitching for an entry level role or a trainee position has already had his or her resume frowned at in the HR office.
Its also down to experience, and these then do lean towards higher paying roles. Longevity is more likely with older applicants as a younger person may be testing the water so to speak to find out the best fit for their chosen profession.
Not to mention in this image driven world, this I detest and most employers wont even admit it- what do you look like? have the years treated you well or do you look like you are knocking on deaths door... Many employers fit a person's look to their image conscious campaigns so a pretty lady recruit transpires to be more promising than the Miss Marple look-a-like. Horrible, but true, and its very very wrong.
Older folks can usually get the more senior positions but those in their 40s and 50s may luck out against a slightly younger applicant. There are other reasons but these are what i have been seeing amongst people I know.
In the UK you are no longer able to ask a persons age when recruiting, however, when you submit a CV it is fairly obvious if you have a wealth of experience and what grades you obtained at school that you aint no spring chicken!
I have just turned 50 and do not by any standards regard myself as 'old' but it seems when looking for work I am. It is a pity that employers do not realise that unlike the 'youthful' candidate, I am highly unlikely to want maternity leave or time off to look after sick kids and am probably more reliable and likely to stay with the firm rather than look for the next best thing.
Perhaps they think my creaking joints may disrupt the workforce or that I may need time off for that hip replacement!!!!
In Australia a lot of people are happy to have older workers . I am 46 & get jobs fairly easily, just started at Coles supermarket & Nev my husband recently started a job at age 64 .
Both may share an advantage depending on the type of work and the environment. When I used to hire people, I usually preferred the old generation because they seemed less likely to have all of the little hang-up that younger people do. I think the fantasy of working for one employer for the rest of your life is long over with in the American job scene. Hire whomever is better qualified.
If you live in the United States, there is a law that protects against age discrimination called the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967. I applaud your efforts for fighting for what you knew was right 25 years ago, but truthfully, I think your boss was truly unaware of how legally protected this lady was and how unlawful his or her initial decision was. I am sure it happens a lot still today but most company's do offer employees the opportunity to report unethical practices like this and also protects from retaliation for employees who reports these type of issues.
Age therefore should never be a determinant of hiring but what qualifications the applicant brings to the table.
Here are more facts about age discrimination provided by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission:
Despite the law, age discrimination is rampant. Employers prefer younger workers and older workers are pushed out the door. This happened to me almost two years ago and I have been unable to find employment since. Society as a whole loses when this happens as a lot of knowledge and experience are lost when older workers are tossed aside like trash.
It depends on the position. If it's more of an entry-level position I would think the 20-something person would have the advantage. Otherwise, the 40-something's experience would probably give him/her an advantage.
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