Boomer Employment Options Improving

Aug 17, 2018 / Amanda Chase, Horsesmouth Assistant Editor

It’s not difficult to find baby boomers out in the job market who will tell you that they have fewer employment options than they used to. The turning point occurs around age 55. According to a recent study, only 4% of people in their early 50s who find a new job are moving into what the researchers label as “old-person jobs”—that is, jobs in occupations that disproportionately employ older workers. The share in these jobs increases sharply, to 13%, by the time they reach their late 50s and to 22% in their early 60s.

The situation has improved for two of the three age groups they analyzed. The share of new hires who are in their early 50s and end up in old-person jobs has fallen by more than two-thirds since the late 1990s. For people in their early 60s, it has fallen by nearly one-fifth. Various possible reasons for the improvement include an aging labor force—managers included. As managers age, they may become more amenable to hiring older workers.

The study also found that things have improved for both educational groups: those who have spent at least some time in college and those who never attended college. College-educated women between 50 and 64 have made the most progress: 8% were in old-person jobs in the early 1990s but only 3% are today. One reason could be the particularly large increase in the number of women who’ve received college degrees or professional training, which gives them more of an edge over younger job seekers.

While it’s still true that the job market becomes less welcoming as people age, it’s better than it used to be.

You can find the full article at the Squared Away Blog.


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