More Companies Encourage Older Workers to Stay

November 16, 2005 ( - A Hudson survey found that, even though age discrimination is visible in the US workforce, more companies are taking steps to keep older workers on the job.

Even though 23% of the US workforce know of an older worker who has been denied a job, promotion, or raise due to age, 38% say their company encourages older workers to stay rather than retire early because they are hard to replace, according to a Hudson press release on the survey. The survey found that 15% of companies want to make way for younger employees.

Entrepreneurs and small business operators try to retain older employees more than other employers – 49% encourage older workers to stay, while only 11% promote retirement. Thirty percent of government workers say their employer encourages older workers to stay, while 26% say retirement is encouraged.

The survey also found, according to the release, that companies are taking steps to take advantage of older worker knowledge and experience. Thirty five percent of respondents say their firms offer formal mentoring programs to pair a younger worker with an older one for guidance and training. That number rises to 50% among companies with 250-500 employees. Among those employees whose firms offer such programs, 51% say their firms encourage older workers to stay.

A Hudson survey released in January 2005 found that 74% of older workers plan to stay on the job at least part-time because they feel they will need the money (See Survey: Half of Workers Ill Prepared to Stop Work ). The current survey found that 57% of respondents believe workers stay on the job past retirement age for money, and 27% believe it is so the older worker will have something to do.

The Hudson aging workforce survey is based on a national poll of 1,075 US workers and was compiled by Rasmussen Reports, LLC, an independent research firm.