Belfast Telegraph

Employers urged to support all age groups amid concerns older staff 'overlooked'

Firms are being urged to offer training to older workers after research found many were being "overlooked".

A study showed that more than a third of workers over the age of 51 believed their employer put more effort into developing young staff than retaining older ones.

City & Guilds said its survey of 1,000 people aged 18-30 or over 51 raised concerns that companies were not doing enough to prepare for the UK's ageing workforce.

Only a third of older employees discussed career progression with a manager, half as many as younger staff, even though most believed they had the skills needed for jobs of the future.

City & Guilds said employers should support all age groups, especially as the country was being hit by skills gaps.

Chief executive Chris Jones said: "As people are working longer, the multigenerational workforce is becoming commonplace. Employers will need to think carefully not just about their recruitment strategies, but how they develop and engage their whole workforce, regardless of age.

"Whilst the Government's policies around developing young people and preparing them for work are important, we cannot ignore the other generations who may also need help entering or progressing in the workplace."

Minister for Employment Damian Hinds said: "Older workers can bring decades of valuable knowledge and experience to the workplace.

"There are now more older people in employment than ever before which is great news, but we must keep up this momentum as our population ages.

"I want to see more employers supporting older workers and taking full advantage of the benefits they bring to their business.

"That's why last month we launched the Fuller Working Lives strategy calling on employers to boost the number of older workers and not overlook people just because they have reached a certain age."