Thursday, April 14, 2011

Hays Study Calls for Global Government Response to Looming Unemployment

Hays plc, a global recruiting firm, in partnership with economic forecaster Oxford Economics, has called on governments and industries across the world to take joint action to tackle the looming threat of increased global unemployment as the world's working population is set to increase dramatically--by 1 billion in next 20 years. However, that growth will be uneven, as all of this growth will be developing economies; the developed world will see its workforce shrink and age.

Accordingly, in "Creating Jobs in a Global Economy 2011-2030" (or click here for PDF), Hays proposes a five-point plan to avert future labor crises as significantly more people are set to join the global labor force.
  1. Keep national borders open for the movement of skilled labour.
  2. Agree an international code to facilitate employee migration.
  3. Invest in training and education.
  4. Create employment opportunities in the developing world.
  5. Retain older people in the workplace.
With respect to the fifth point that should be the basis of further discussion by world and business leaders, Hays says:
Over the next 20 years developed economies will become increasingly reliant on the contribution from workers aged 60 or more. Many countries such as Britain have already passed anti-discrimination legislation to enable older people to stay at work and remain productive, but there is more to be done both in terms of maintaining the skills of an aging workforce as well as providing opportunities for these workers.
In this regard, the report notes that data "suggest older workers exhibit a number of different labour market characteristics from younger ones:
  • They have a greater tendency to be self-employed and a lower tendency to be employees.
  • The distribution of older workers across industries differs from the rest of the workforce.
  • They have a greater tendency to be part-time or work on temporary contracts than other workers.
  • Older workers tend to remain with an employer for longer periods of time than other workers.
  • Involuntary separations are lower for older workers than younger ones.
  • If older workers become unemployed, they tend to remain jobless for longer durations than other workers.
Accordingly, Hays recommends "examining each of these phenomena in detail as they contain different lessons for employers seeking to get the most out of their available staff."

Source: Hays plc Press Release (April 12, 2011)

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