ERIC Number: ED392890
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1995
Valuing Older Workers: A Study of Costs and Productivity.
ICF, Inc., Washington, DC.
A comparative analysis of 12 case studies examined the work performance and employment costs and benefits of older employees relative to younger workers at 12 companies spanning a diversity of industries, locations, and sizes. Each company provided quantitative information on a written questionnaire on work force demographics and direct and indirect costs of employment. In-person interviews were conducted at each company with a senior corporate executive, line manager, and human resource manager. A group discussion with older employees at the company was held to learn their perspectives about recent and planned changes at the company. Most companies lacked the information and had not performed the analysis to conclude definitively that age-related differences in costs existed. Human resource policies and decisions were the product of subjective assessments by corporate gatekeepers. Overall, managers did not project pervasive, companywide biases against older workers. Managers rated older workers highly for experience, judgment, commitment to quality, turnover, and attendance/punctuality. They rated them weak on flexibility, acceptance of new technology, the ability to learn new skills, and the physical ability to perform strenuous jobs. The traits managers most admired were not highly valued in making human resource decisions related to hiring, promotion, job assignment, and retention. Traits cited as weaknesses were considered most desirable for today's changing workplace. (Contains 22 references.) (YLB)
Descriptors: Adult Education, Age Discrimination, Aging (Individuals), Cost Effectiveness, Employee Attitudes, Employer Attitudes, Employer Employee Relationship, Employment Practices, Equal Opportunities (Jobs), Job Performance, Middle Aged Adults, Older Adults, Older Workers, Personnel Policy
AARP Work Force Programs Dept., Business Partnerships, 601 E Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20049 (stock no. D15715).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: American Association of Retired Persons, Washington, DC. Work Force Programs Dept.
Authoring Institution: ICF, Inc., Washington, DC.