Sunday, October 07, 2012

Canada: Report on Employment Practices and Employability of Mature Workers in Montreal

Community Economic Development and Employability Corporation (CEDEC) has followed up its report on the perceived challenges of mature workers throughout the greater Montreal area with a survey of employers, recruitment agencies and employment service providers to understand their perspectives on the opportunities or challenges associated with hiring a mature worker. Among other things, CEDEC's "Employment Practices and Employability of the Hidden Talent Pool: The Mature Workers Report" suggests that mature workers maintain a positive reputation in the workforce, but also reports that stakeholders mentioned several critical factors affecting English-speaking mature workers’ capacity to find employment.

For example, CEDEC reports that "employers perceive older workers as generally stable, productive, committed, responsible, and highly motivated with strong work ethics." However, it also reports that workers "have difficulty finding employment; they experience various levels of prejudice (ageism) when looking for work and are keenly aware that they are being discriminated against as a result of their age." The factors that CEDEC finds employers citing as barriers to employability include a lack of French language skills, unrealistic salary expectations, lack of technological (mostly computer) skills, a resistance to change and unwillingness to work long hours or overtime.

CEDEC recommends that:
  • the government should also be sensitized to the need to hire mature candidates for federal and provincial jobs.
  • companies should have concrete strategies for retaining mature employees in their workforce.
  • companies should understand and address the motivations and needs of mature employees while seeing the benefits of keeping mature workers on board.
Source: Community Economic Development and Employability Corporation News Release (October 5, 2012)

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