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The Changing Workforce: Age, Technology, and Employment

Part Two: Challenges 7-13

written by Patrick Ow February 25, 2020
The Changing Workforce: Age, Technology, and Employment

Patrick Ow shares the problems and challenges occurring as the workforce changes over time; employees’ age, added technology, and finding full-time employment could be affecting you.

7. Age Discrimination Occurs in Workplaces

It was reported by the Sydney Morning Herald that discrimination against older workers will intensify in the coming years as three powerful trends collide: a weaker-than-expected economy, automation of more jobs, and an aging population.

According to CV-Library, a staggering 70.8% of U.K. employees have revealed that age discrimination is common in their workplace, rising to 85.3% amongst those aged 55 to 64.

In Australia, Nestegg reported that people as young as 45 have been subjected to ageism in the workplace and 28% have experienced discrimination. They experienced “less favorable treatment” at work or had difficulty finding work due to their age.

Age discrimination is very real in workplaces. It will become more prevalent as organizations search for ways to cut costs in the coming years through organizational restructures and mergers and acquisitions.

The unfortunate reality for many older workers is that they aren’t considered a lucrative or favorable hire. Even though age discrimination is illegal, the above 55-year-olds can’t seem to get their feet back in the door.

While the overall U.S. unemployment rate is expected to hover around 4% in 2018, Fortune reported that the unemployment rate for 55 to 64-year-olds is predicted to be much higher at 12%.

Job security will no longer exist. Older workers will be more at risk.

Whether we like it or not, the Australian Human Rights Commission noted that workers will increasingly face four types of age discrimination as they get older:

  1. Unable to get an interview or secure a job.
  2. Becoming stuck or constrained in their job.
  3. Being targeted for redundancy or restructure.
  4. Subject to discriminatory culture or management.

When organizations have to prioritize who will be the first to leave, the obvious choice will be the ones who are paid the highest. This will inevitably include older workers who have worked hard to move up the corporate ladder. As they move up the corporate ladder, they are paid more.

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