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Employers have to recruit more people aged over 50 and 60

Employers who do not consider recruiting more people aged over 50 and 60 into executive positions are reducing their potential competitiveness.

This is the view of Keith Simpson, managing director of SkilledPeople.com who has observed a major shift in the recruitment market over the past 10 years.

There are now 20 million people in the UK aged over 50 of which a large proportion need to keep working for financial reasons or want to stay employed for social interaction. Either way, this army of over 50s contains a wealth of knowledge and experience which employers can tap into. SkilledPeople alone has 20,000 highly experienced ‘white collar’ workers on its books looking for new work opportunities.

In recent years employers have focussed most of their recruitment efforts on candidates aged between 30 and 45 to fill career executive positions. As a result, intense competition for quality candidates prompted above average salary inflation.

With the advent of near full employment in the UK it makes no sense for employers to constantly bid up the costs of this shrinking pool of talent. Instead, many employers are widening their recruitment focus to consider older applicants. These more mature candidates come with added benefits of greater reliability, better attendance records and superior attention to detail.

Despite the demographic shifts in the UK making it imperative that employers recruit more older people it’s still the case that short-sighted recruiters practice ‘under the table’ age discrimination. We still hear of too many examples of this type of behaviour for it to be coincidental according to Keith Simpson. “But time will work against these unscrupulous recruiters as they will find their businesses being out at a disadvantage if they ignore the over 50s”, he observes.

September 30, 2017

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