Singapore's Employer Allliance has released a study showing that older workers want flexible working hours to allow them to spend more time with their families and engage in leisure activities. However, the same study shows that only 5% to 15% of new positions here are made available to older people as employers perceive them to have lower energy levels, lack relevant skills and the ability to adapt quickly.
The employee desires were reported as a result of focus groups. Workers aged 50-54 wanted a job that requires minimal travelling and provides flexible working hours. Those aged 55-59 said they wanted greater flexibility when taking long periods of leave to enjoy leisure activities such as travelling and also wanted a lighter workload.
The employer attitudes were reported as a result of a survey of 22 employers. Despite their reluctance to hire, however, the companies do value older workers who are already in their employment, because of their loyalty and wealth of knowledge.
Source: AsiaOne News "Older workers prefer flexi-work" (October 13, 2010)