No, you’re not too old for a new job.

The days of reaching retirement age, reaching for your fluffy slippers and claiming a gold card have become less and less realistic. Not only do Kiwis want to keep working past 65 but in some cases, they have no choice. A recent retirement survey showed that the majority of New Zealanders have to keep working in order to maintain their basic necessities. So what does this mean for ageing workers? Is it possible to get into a new job or upskill into higher level work?

The quick answer is yes. The long answer is that it’s going to take a bit of effort. There are a few factors that grey workers need to consider if they want to continue working; showing value to employers, upskilling, age-friendly careers and adapting to your needs.

Show your value

We’re not going to sugar coat it. Age discrimination is a thing, but there is a way to overcome it. Employers need to know exactly what value you can offer than a younger candidate may not provide, namely your experience, loyalty to the company and dependability. In fact, studies show 91% of younger workers expect to leave their current company within the first three years of working. Therefore, the concern around investing in an older worker are not as relevant as they seem.

Be open to upskilling

Think it’s too late to keep learning? Think again! Factors such as technology dependence and industry changes can seem daunting, but with the plethora of quick and intuitive courses available, it’s easier than ever to learn new skills. Whether you need to improve your computer skills or be re-energised on industry changes, learning new skills can not only add to your work life but extend to your personal life too. Win-win!

Age-friendly careers

Contrary to common beliefs, older workers don’t typically leave work because they’re incapable of actually doing the job. However, there are some jobs that are obviously more physically demanding than others. If you work in a job that has the potential to become too strenuous for you, consider a transition to a role which allows you to utilise your experience instead. Ask employers if have any positions available to train new employees for example. Luckily, many companies are now focused on diversity — this means hiring a range of employees who can provide a “variety of different perspectives and experiences” making accessibility to work easier.

Adapting to your needs

The most important thing to remember is that your work needs to fit your current needs. This may mean reducing hours to part-time or transitioning into a different form of work within your company. Adapting your work to your individual circumstances is the best way to ensure you maintain a comfortable balance of being both challenged and satisfied in your role.

JBA can offer you a range of quick, easy online courses to get you the skills you need to stay employable. Check us out here