Do the Math

Stress duration, not age

A common excuse to not hire older applicants is that because of their ages, they may not be around very long and the employer will have to refill the position – a costly undertaking that virtually all HR departments want to avoid.

As with most myths surrounding older applicants, nothing could be further from the truth.

All demographic data shows that old workers are not retiring at age 65. A significant number are staying in the workforce until age 70 and beyond.

So let’s do the math. A 55-year old applicant who works until age 70 will have a tenure of 15 years. In this day and age, there aren’t many workers who stay with the same employer beyond 15 years.

In fact, most younger applicants routinely stay with an employer for not more than five-to-ten years. Recent college graduates are being counseled – regardless of pay, advancement, or how the employer treats its employees – to stay with an employer for only three-to-five years before moving on.

All these workforce trends make a stronger case for the older worker. Older workers – in addition to all the other advantages they bring to the table – are the smart choice for their stability and duration. This is something all older applicants need to emphasize during the hiring process.

When asked, “Where do you see yourself in five years?” The correct answer should be “right here.”


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