Age discrimination affects both young workers and older workers. Qualified young job seekers are often overlooked for promotions and higher-up positions because managers believe they are too inexperienced or immature to take on these roles. However, age discrimination in the workplace is especially detrimental to the elderly, as they may be forced into retirement before they have accumulated enough savings.
Many people who retired are now returning to the workplace to replenish their retirement savings or because relaxing at home was not as fulfilling as they imagined it would be. CNBC estimates that people over 65 are the fastest-growing demographic in the workplace.
Even though many companies are now ramping up their efforts to attract millennials. So, the age group once considered too young just a few years ago is now at the top of many recruiters’ priority lists. Some ways companies discriminate in favor of millennials include the following:
- Using a birth-date drop-down menu that has a specific cut-off point
- Mentioning a maximum instead of a minimum length of experience
- Using words like “overqualified” to discourage applicants or explain rejections
- Increasing the level of difficulty for interviews, which millennials tend to breeze through
- Pushing corporate cultures that are hip to millennial cultures
MarketWatch adds that even when seniors make it through the initial process, the callback rates are much lower despite having more experience. For example, in sales, younger women had a callback rate of 26% to 29%, while senior women had a callback rate of just 18%. The sales callback rate was 21% for young men and only 15% for senior men.
Proving age discrimination during the hiring process can be difficult for job seekers. Thankfully, it is much easier to acquire documentation when seniors begin to get pushed out of the jobs they already hold to make way for younger employees.