For an older person, there are all sorts of incentives to continue working later in life—disability insurance, additional income, benefits, and retirement funds. What’s more, employment provides the older worker with an activity to occupy his or her time.
But there are also incentives for employers to hire older workers for their staff. Here are ten benefits that can come from bringing older workers into your organization.
They Tend to Be More Loyal
Early in life, young professionals are eager to take on the next big challenge or opportunity. With much of life’s accomplishments in the rearview, older employees are much more likely to fend off other offers if they are already content in their current workplace.
Per a 2020 news release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median tenure of workers in the 55 – 64 age bracket was 9.9 years—more than three times that of workers in the 25 – 34 age bracket.
The amount of money you save by retaining an older employee versus having to replace a younger employee in the near future might make it worth hiring the loyal older employee.
They Take Fewer Days Off
While older employees might need to take the occasional sick day, they are less likely to take as many personal days and vacation days as younger employees do.
This provides a level of consistency and reliability that your organization might currently be lacking. If you find that your current level of productivity and output ebbs and flows depending on the personnel you have available, consider adding a seasoned employee to your team.
They Work Harder than Most
Few people are born with a strong work ethic. While it may be encouraged from a young age, it can take years to develop a love for work and a commitment to working hard.
What’s more, hard work has been a core value of the Traditionalist and Baby Boomer generations, and also Generation X to an extent. Compare this to the Millennials and Generation Z, who are generally perceived as valuing fun, sociability, and avid media consumption.
Bring an older worker into your organization and you might get an employee who not only works hard but also leads the way for other team members to do the same.
Their Skills Have Been Honed
It’s no secret that the longer and harder you work at a particular skill, the sharper that skill becomes.
In the case of older employees, they have spent years honing their skills and are likely to have an advantage over the average worker in this regard—especially if they have work expertise in your industry, specifically.
Because of this, older employees can also be deployed in training roles where the technical skills of young or inexperienced workers need to be developed.
Their Knowledge Has Been Developed
It should go without saying that older employees are typically among the more knowledgeable workers that are available to your organization.
First, they have accumulated knowledge about the industry itself, and this includes business connections that have been formed and nurtured over the years—connections that may become valuable to your company.
Not only have older workers developed technical knowledge in their respective industries but they have also developed the everyday wisdom that can’t be taught in university or the workplace. Passing on this kind of wisdom can help your younger employees mature and accelerate their decision-making ability early on in their careers.
They Offer Mentorship for Young Professionals
So long as young employees are open to learning from those who have gained knowledge, wisdom, and experience across years in the workforce, your company can benefit from having a few older employees on board.
Naturally, older employees often take on mentorship roles in organizations. You might find that they are not only willing but also eager to pass along lessons they have learned.
This can also help you retain your younger employees, as having a mentor speak into their lives can make them feel as though they are being heavily invested in at your company.
They Bring Diversity to the Workplace
As a company, leaving the responsibility of decision-making to a very limited demographic stifles your ability to make smart, unbiased decisions.
When organizations include people across age groups, genders, and ethnicities in important business decisions, on the other hand, it tends to benefit their bottom line and long-term success. Per a recent study from Cloverpop, companies that embrace inclusive decision-making make better business decisions 87% of the time.
Additionally, diversity can play a critical role in attracting top talent to your organization. According to a Glassdoor survey, roughly two-thirds of job seekers regarded a diverse workforce as an important factor when considering employment opportunities.
They Are Passionate about Customer Service
In the minds of many workers from previous generations, great customer experience has been largely replaced by cutting-edge technology, automation, and artificial intelligence.
You might find that your older workers are still very committed to providing a personal experience for customers. When combined with your existing technological tools and systems, this type of personal touch can actually improve the customer experience overall.
They Can Offer Leadership
Similar to work ethic, leadership is an attribute that needs time to fully develop. While young professionals may strive to grow their leadership potential, older workers can confidently lead from a place of knowledge and experience.
This type of leadership can be harnessed to push your business forward and raise up future leaders within your organization.
They Can Adapt to Today’s Technology
One of the biggest misconceptions regarding older employees is that there is a technology gap that cannot be overcome.
Because younger workers have been raised with computers, tablets, and smartphones in their hands, we often assume that they are the only ones who can keep up with new technologies as they are developed.
This is certainly true of organizations that implement technology without providing any kind of training for employees. But at companies that are willing to provide training and support for their employees, older workers have shown that they are more than capable of adapting to new tools and methods.