many workers seem to lose their motivation as they get older.

Old man with a woman going getting off a bus
Old man with a woman going getting off a bus

Confidence in getting a new job also appears to be dipping with age. The government calculates a 5% increase in the mature age participation rate would boost the economy by 2.4%, or almost $48 billion by 2025.

If people are going to work longer, and mature workers will form an even more significant proportion of the workforce, sustaining motivation is vital.

There are many benefits to hiring mature age workers. Mature age workers have lower absentee rates, higher rates of retention and the benefits of life experience, yet many employers are still reluctant to take them on.

Here are five ways your organisation can change their mindset, provide better opportunities and sustain the motivation of mature age workers.

challenge the stereotypes

There’s no more ample room for assumptions and stereotyping - e.g. while many people might assume mature age workers are more likely to be off sick, the opposite is the case. 

support your staff

Research shows older workers like more flexible working opportunities and the chance to take up mentoring roles. This can help your organisation pass on skills and encourage greater engagement and collaboration while managing a multi-generational workforce. 

ensure advertising is neutral

Legally, you can’t refer to the age when advertising unless you’re undertaking positive action - this includes avoiding references such as ‘graduate experience’. It’s also vital to ensure the advertisements don’t appear to favour one age group over another. 

know the drivers

Understanding what drives mature age workers’ attraction to an organisation – and what makes them stay is critical to workforce planning and managing talent. 

age audits

Some businesses now regularly review the age balance in their workforce. Ideally, age audits should not just look at recruitment, but your entire workforce plan, including critical factors such as promotion and availability or take-up of training. 

According to the Randstad Workmonitor and Mobility Index, 63% of Australian workers would be happy to work two years past their retirement age.

When combined with the Australian government offering a range of employer bonus payments as an incentive for organisations to take on more employees over 50 years of age, opportunities for older workers look promising as long as employees are open to attracting and retaining them in their business.

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