Over-50s caught in ‘unemployment trap’

New research has just revealed that nearly a third of people that are between the ages of 50 and 65 are unemployed. However, for many it has proved difficult to get out of the unemployment trap.


Does it become harder as an older person to get a job, and if so, why? Do business owners now stereotype candidates that are of an older age? Or are they just not qualified enough?



Well there’s no simple answer to any of these questions, but it is fair to say that many have experienced ageism whilst on the hunt for a job, which shows it’s not always for lacking in experience and being too young.


Society often creates stereotypes; this can then have an effect on the way some business owners think of the candidate they are considering prior to hiring them. For example, if a candidate is between the ages of 50-65 and the employer is younger, they may feel as though it would be difficult to manage someone that could potentially think they know more than their superiors.


Another issue that has become a hurdle in the older generation’s recruitment process is not having the qualifications that are required in the job description. In research that was carried out by recruitment experts at DYWAJ, roughly 70% of people aged between 40 and 65 didn’t go on to study a degree. With the variety of degrees that are now available, it definitely has the ability to segregate the generations that didn’t have the option.


These factors can of course correlate as to why people aged 50-65 are in an ‘unemployment trap’. However, to reduce discrimination of this sort, experts at DYWAJ would suggest employers need to follow this advice…

1. When posting a job advert it is important to make it appeal to everyone, it is also vital to put it somewhere everyone can see. Online job boards shouldn’t be the only place you advertise a job, try community boards or local newspapers.

2. Be careful when writing the description itself and remove any discriminatory language, for example phrases or words like “new grads” or “young” can single out the older generation.

3. Requiring a birthdate from an applicant can be susceptive ageism. It should be every organisation’s aim to eliminate any form of discrimination and by not requiring an age you are saying that every applicant is equal.

4. Stay away from age-related interview questions.

5. Avoid stereotyping older workers (ex. someone 60 years old will retire soon and isn’t worth hiring).

DYWAJ is an online CV database that aims to eliminate any discriminatory elements from CVs and encourages fairness in the recruitment process. If you need assistance with hiring your next candidate then head to www.dywaj.co.uk for more information.

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