Posts Tagged “jobs for seniors”

Date :   September 2, 2014 
Phillip Thomson

Public Service Reporter at The Canberra Times.

The main union representing public servants says the Department of Human Services has removed a clause enshrining the employment of people from diverse backgrounds from its draft bargaining agreement.

The major department employing about 30,000 staff is being closely watched during negotiations because haggling over its future agreement, which was much further ahead than at many other Commonwealth employers, was expected to set at least part of the agenda across the federal bureaucracy.

The clause was one mechanism in the existing agreement to ensure the department enforced a separate plan, titled the Workplace Diversity and Inclusion Strategy.

The strategy has committed the department to employing more people with disabilities, mature age workers and staff from culturally and linguistically diverse background.

Its clearest goal was to make sure 5 per cent of its staff were Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islanders by 2015, which would mean the department would have more than 1500 indigenous workers out of its 34,700-strong workforce in a little more than a year.

The department said it was on track to exceed the 5 per cent target

“As at July 2014, the percentage of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander employees in the department was 4 per cent, well above the Australian Public Service average of 2.3 per cent as at June 2013,” a department spokeswoman said. “We are also a major employer of people with disability.

“As at July 2014, 4.9 per cent employees of the department identified as having a disability.

“We are a leader in workplace diversity in the Australian Public Service, and so we should be as a large department providing vital services to the community.

“Any suggestion that this is not the case is absolutely without substance.”

The Community and Public Sector Union’s log of claims for all its negotiations affecting 160,000 federal public servants said the union wanted to include a paragraph committing to diversity as well as recruitment and retention strategies.

The department spokeswoman said the public service bargaining framework, handed down by the Abbott government to set the boundaries for the bureaucracy’s managerial representatives during negotiations, clearly stated enterprise agreements should not include terms dealing with matters more properly dealt with by legislation.

“The department’s workplace diversity and inclusion strategy is in line with the legislative requirements set out in the Public Service Act 1999,” the spokeswoman said.

“This strategy is available on the department’s website and intranet.

“It is ingrained in our mandatory training schedule.

“This strategy is our formal commitment to a workplace culture that builds respects, fosters inclusiveness, promotes diversity and embraces the unique skills and qualities of all our employees.”

Source:  Canberra Times

 

Date  August 26, 2014
Natasha Boddy

Canberra Times

Older workers who find themselves out of work are likely to remain unemployed much longer than younger Australians and superannuation balances among those in their pre-retirement years are unevenly distributed.

Marcia Keegan, an associate with Curtin University and SGS Economics and Planning, said generous tax concessions for mature-age workers topping up their superannuation do not benefit people who find themselves out of work or underemployed in the latter half of their working lives.

Dr Keegan will give a talk about the option for sustaining workforce participation to retirement age and reducing superannuation gaps, at a forum at the Australian National University on Wednesday.

“Things have been getting a lot better for mature-age workers, those aged between 45 and 64, over the last 20 years or so; they’ve got higher rates of employment, lower rates of disability, they’ve got lower rates of unemployment and also their superannuation balances are growing on average,” she said.

However, Dr Keegan, said it still took much longer for older job seekers to find work compared to their younger counterparts. About a quarter of those aged 45 to 64 remained unemployed for more than a year;  this was the case for only 15 per cent of people aged under 44.

This raised concerns about the impact of long-term unemployment on their the superannuation balances, she said.

Dr Keegan’s presentation will look at some of the difficulties facing older workers and discuss policy options that could increase employment for mature-age workers and boost the superannuation balances of those heading into retirement.

She said the government’s new Restart program should be “quite helpful” when it comes to encouraging the employment of older Australians. Under the program, employers will get subsidies of up to $10,000 for hiring mature-age job seekers.

“Older people have a greater risk of being long-term unemployed and they also run the risk of facing age discrimination in the workforce, so this will hopefully encourage some employers [to hire older workers],” she said.

Dr Keegan said changes that allowed older people to contribute extra to their superannuation could be quite helpful, but only to those who had employment.

“One of the things that was floated was getting rid of the low income superannuation contribution,” she said.

“Of all the ways the government can raise money from taxes, taking money from the retirement accounts of low income workers is probably not the first place you should be looking.”

Dr Keegan said moves to increase the pension age was a natural progression given life expectancies were increasing, “but that only helps if you’re able to work and able to find work”.

The Living to get the age pension and enjoy life in retirement: prospects and policy options forum will hear from several speakers discussing factors affecting the health and well-being of older Australians. It will also examine policy options that could address inequalities in retirement stemming from inequalities in earlier in life, particularly those associated with workforce participation and disability.

Richard Cumpston, director of Australian Projections, will also speak at the forum. He will discuss the topic of life expectancies, including the differences in people’s chances of dying,  such as how married people are much less likely to die than unmarried people.

Dr Cumpston also said educated people tended to have lower disease risks, and people in high-grade occupations, such as professionals or managers, tended to have better life expectancies.

 

Read more: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/act-news/older-job-seekers-remain-unemployed-for-longer-20140826-1079l3.html#ixzz3C3c81qFM

Some job applicants just always get it right. Here is why. You know… the type that gets it right from the moment the recruiter or hiring manager spots them for the first time. They simply get noticed.

I regularly remind my clients how important it is to get the basics right if you want to be considered as a suitable candidate. It doesn’t take much if you want to get noticed and, more importantly, be remembered for the right reasons.

Here are 13 tips that will make you stand out as a candidate so you can secure your next job.

13 Tips To Get Noticed

If you want to get your application to the top of the pile and fast forward to the front of the interview queue then get your highlighter and mark some or all of these tips so you can secure your next job opportunity.

Keep hunting, there are good jobs out there, just don’t forget to hunt wisely!

Written By

Ulrich Schild – The Job Search Coach

Ulrich Schild, The founder of TheJobSearchCoach.net has actively scouted, interviewed and hired many talented candidates for a variety of employers in Australia and New Zealand while being exposed to some of the very best and worst HR and recruiting practises.Ulrich has always known that he can help and contribute his bit to make Job Search, Job Seeking and the recruiting process easier and better.

 Ageism in the Job Market

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Are we our own worst enemies? Part 1 of a series on ageism in the workplace.

“We’re looking for someone hungrier.”

“The right candidate is high energy.”

If you’re over 50 and job-hunting, chances are you’ve heard phrases like these. Or maybe you’ve been told you’re overqualified or too senior. These are code words for “too old” and they pepper the language of hiring managers nationwide. Jacquelyn James, director of research at the Sloan Center for Aging & Work at Boston College says when people are asked on surveys to rate others on the basis of age and corresponding characteristics, older people are associated with negative traits that include a lack of interest in growing and developing, inflexibility in thinking and an unwillingness to learn and adapt to new technology. “The data about those kinds of traits are very mixed and much of it is perception,” she says.  And some weren’t negative. “Older people are seen as having a good work ethic, as working harder and being more comfortable with authority.”

Add to such negative stereotypes the mistaken perception that people working into their 60s and early 70s are taking jobs from younger workers. Although arecent Pew study soundly debunked that, as does Kevin Cahill, a research economist at the Sloan Center, the belief is pervasive. Cahill says although people are retiring later, the idea that older workers need to move out of the way for younger workers is a misperception. “The argument breaks down pretty rapidly if you look beyond individual firms and over time,” he says.

See also: Top LinkedIn Tips for Job Seekers

But prejudice of any type, of course, isn’t based on fact, and much of the age bias we see in hiring is unconscious, says Jacquelyn James. That’s due, at least in part, to the fact that ageism is the least studied or examined form of discrimination. A recent paper on ageism from psychologist Susan Fiske and Michael North at Princeton University, called ageism “the most socially condoned” form of prejudice. And it has intensified. By the time people reach their mid-60s, two out of three have retired, either voluntarily or because they weren’t able to keep or find a job, according to research from Gary Burtless, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. By age 75, nine out of ten are out of the workforce.

Among the long-term unemployed, the situation is most severe for those over 55, who face the longest period of unemployment. Carl Van Horn, director of the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University, says although the number fluctuates, at least two million people over age 55 have been out of work more than six months and at least half of those for more than a year.

See also: How Can I Compete With People Younger Than My Kids?

Because ageism is often unconscious it’s tough to disarm. With any bias, the key to mitigation is awareness, says James. Fact is, people generally don’t think of themselves as biased. In order to fight the stereotypes—say, that older workers don’t embrace new technology—James advises job candidates be explicit with interviewers that they are eager to learn, and have history of learning and embracing new technology.

With the right strategies, job seekers can combat age-related stereotypes rather than buying into them, says James, and take steps to adapt to the changing culture of the workplace.

Speak the Same Language

“People over 50 grew up talking about their accomplishments, about what they did and how well they did it,” says Gail Palubiak, owner of Interview Academy in Denver, a job search and interview consulting firm that specializes in over-50 job seekers. “But companies today speak the language of contribution. And this is critical—because you are likely interviewing with someone who isn’t the same generation. So talk about how you served a company, not how great you are.”

Date

Belinda Merhab

Forget knitting and pie-baking – Aussie grandmas are going into business.

Australian women aged over 65 have been starting their own businesses at a rate higher than any other age group, with nantrepreneurs setting up 18,500 businesses in the past 10 years, according to the annual Bankwest Business Trends Report.

Over the past year, the number of over-65 female business owners jumped by 15.1 per cent, compared to one per cent growth by men in the same age bracket.

Bankwest business banking general manager Sinead Taylor said the figures showed older Australian women were looking for ways to boost their retirement incomes.

Over-65 women were primarily starting businesses in the `other services’ category, such as hairdressing, photography and gardening, she said.

“This trend can be attributed to a variety of factors like lifetime personal goals and people pursuing new interests,” Ms Taylor said.

“There’s also the impact of the global financial crisis on retirement nest eggs, forcing some retirees to supplement their superannuation by starting their own businesses.

“Age is certainly no barrier to entrepreneurialism.”

Overall, the number of Australians running their own business declined by four per cent in the year to May.

The only other age group to see an increase in business self-starters in the past year were the under-25s, with 2.5 per cent of workers in that age bracket owning their own business.

Ms Taylor said challenging economic conditions were driving entrepreneurs to seek the security of being an employee rather than an employer.

Source:  SMH

 

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The Human Rights Commission has launched a new video awareness campaign aimed at highlighting the value of older workers.

The Power of Oldness, launched by Age Discrimination Commissioner, Susan Ryan and Minister for Employment, Senator Eric Abetz exposes the stark difference between the skills and strengths mature workers offer employers and organisations, with the discrimination they face when trying to gain or maintain jobs.

It is a web campaign aimed at raising awareness about the value of workers over the age of 50, with the video as its centrepiece.

Ms Ryan said Australians were living through a massive demographic change, but community attitudes, employer practices and business strategies seemed to ignore this.

“The Power of Oldness campaign will, we hope, prod everyone to recognise and act to stop age discrimination,” Ms Ryan said.

Rights Commission launches video

“Research undertaken by the Australian Human Rights Commission has found that one in 10 employers won’t recruit people over the age of 50.”

She said it was important that the experience and talent of older workers was highlighted as they already contributed to business and the community and had much more to offer.

Senator Abetz said the campaign was a way of getting the message about the value of older workers, to people of all ages around Australia.

“The video juxtaposes reality and perceptions in what I consider to be an active, pacey and poignant presentation,” Senator Abetz said.

More information on the Power of Oldness can be found at this PS News link.

Posted by Judy Higgins on 30 July 2014

In workplaces all over the world, managers are for the first time dealing with the issues that arise when up to four generations work side by side.

Older workers stay on in employment for a variety of reasons. Some can’t afford to retire, others enjoy work and choose to continue, and in many cases mature employees want to build up their superannuation.

Organisations put themselves in a vulnerable position if they don’t have a profile of workers based on age and by section of the organisation. In an environment with an ageing population and ageing workforces, organisations need to be on the front foot. A profile of the age of your workers is essential, and a strategy to address retention and transition to retirement should now be part of any human resources strategy.

Talk to your older staff about their working plans. You will need to discuss:

  • How long they intend to continue working
  • Do they intend to keep working the same hours or slowly transition to retirement?
  • Will they be able to continue to do the same job for those years or will they need to re-train?
  • Developing an individual workplace plan

Critical to the effectiveness of this exercise is ensuring the discussion takes place in a non-threatening manner and that mature-age workers feel comfortable and confident to take part in the discussion. A carefully worded letter or memo should be sent to individuals from the Managing Director or CEO, advising them how valued they are and how serious the organisation is about retaining and working with employees who may be thinking about retiring.

Given that the age to access the age pension may rise to 70, considerations of older workers will be more important than ever. There are also many who will not want to work that long, and if they are some of your key people you need to know, and you need to have a strategy to address filling the gaps.

You must also make sure you have the policies and procedures in place to reflect that your company is sincere about valuing its older workers, and has the flexibility and trained managers to work in the best interests of all stakeholders. Companies that don’t do this well risk losing years of experience and knowledge that could be detrimental to their business.

 

Source:  The Living Well Navigator