Companies Embrace Older Workers As Younger Employees Quit or Become Less Reliable

Ageism can feel overwhelming on your green career switch, so it’s always good to read some supportive news:

At 73, showing up to work five days a week in the shipping department of AIS Inc.—an office pod manufacturing company he’s been with for nearly two decades—was starting to be a grind for Bob Adams. He kept having to request Fridays off for doctor’s appointments to help keep his nagging diabetes, high blood pressure, and cholesterol issues in check.

So last month, Adams asked for all Fridays off—a permanent four day workweek.

At a time when employers nationwide are desperate to find and retain reliable workers, Adams not only got his wish, but his employer says he is welcome to ask for whatever work schedule fits his needs. “I’m 100% sure that if Bob said he could work only two days weekly, we’d do that because we know his value to the company,” says Steve Savage, chief operating officer at AIS.

At a growing number of companies, this is the power of reliable, older workers, a new dynamic that explains why 40% of AIS’s 750-person workforce is over age 50. It’s why AIS, Microsoft, Marriott, and Macy’s are among more than 1,000 employers nationwide that have signed the AARP Employer Pledge to promote equal opportunity for all workers, regardless of age. Thanks to new forces at play in the U.S. economy, experts say the future for some older workers—many of whom are more accustomed to getting pink slips or buyout offers—might be brightening. Read the full article on Time.

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