Program Gets Mature Workers Back on Their Feet
2 September 2013 at 10:43 am
A new program in Victoria will help mature aged workers get back into the workforce.
Set to begin in early September, Experience + Work Ready will be a free program run by the Brotherhood of St Laurence that will match unemployed mature aged workers with employers.
Funded by the Federal Government, the program will be voluntary and will be run over six months in Footscray and Ringwood.It will be open to anyone over 50 who lives in the local area.
“This program is specifically designed to support mature aged workers who are keen to get back into the workforce, as well as those who are keen to stay in the workforce but might want to change direction and need support to update their skills," program coordinator Stephen Murphy said.
"We can support people by providing advice about the job market, organising short courses to update skills, and matching workers with employers who are keen to find skilled and experienced employees," he said.
"As we know, the over-50s can offer employers a wealth of experience,” he said.
The program coincides with research released this week by a UK mature-age organisation suggesting that older workers are as productive as their younger counterparts.
The research, which investigated the evidence behind common perceptions about older workers, was carried out on behalf of Age UK by Essex Business School, University of Essex.
AgeUK said the report showed there was little evidence to back up what they described as ‘disparaging but ingrained stereotypes of older workers’ when it came to productivity, health, commitment and flexibility.
Older workers were as motivated and willing to work as flexibly as younger workers, and while there was evidence of decline in some physical attributes in some older workers, there was negligible decline in overall productivity because older workers compensated with skills and experience, the study suggested.
AgeUK said that while evidence suggested younger people might be typically faster at carrying out repetitive tasks, the research showed that older people are often faster at carrying out complex tasks that allow them to draw on their knowledge and experience.
Older people also took fewer short-term absences than younger workers, but their absences on sick leave were longer. Similarly, older people were found to have fewer but more serious accidents at work.