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Archive for July, 2010

Scrapping of forced retirement at 65 welcomed by employers

July 29th, 2010   By   Filed Under: Everyone

Government plans to abolish the default retirement age from October 2011 have been welcomed by employers, employers groups and UK unions as a victory for choice.

At the moment, employers are allowed to force staff to retire at the age of 65 without having to give a reason.

Andrew Groves, head of national resourcing at Yell, welcomed the change, telling Recruiter that the change could potentially help employers redress skills shortages.

However, he said that for this to happen employers would need to change their attitude first. “It will be tough for employers to overcome [their attitude], as for many their instinct is that younger people are faster paced and more aggressive about where they want to get to.”

Rachel Krys, campaign director of the Employers Forum on Age (EFA), says: “The EFA works with many companies who have removed the mandatory retirement age such as B&Q, Nationwide, JD Wetherspoon, BT, The Co-operative and M&S to name but a few; and they are already reaping the benefits. Age is not a proxy for ability.”

Chris Ball, chief executive of The Age and Employment Network (TAEN), adds: “This move can only be a first step. Many employers will need to adopt a totally new mindset… It will certainly mean providing opportunities to train or re-train and to work more flexibly and, crucially, actually recruiting people in their 50s and 60s where they may not have done so in the past.”

Welcoming the plans, TUC general secretary Brendan Barber says: “This is a welcome move. It cannot be right that workers lose their protection against arbitrary dismissal overnight because of their age.

“But we need to go further to give people real choice about how and when they retire with new rights for flexible working. This can end the retirement cliff-edge where people work full-time one day and stop work the next. Many would prefer a phased retirement.

“Not everyone wants to work longer and may not be fit enough to continue. Today’s move should be about choice, not an expectation that people will work longer so don’t need decent pensions.”

Employment relations minister, Ed Davey, said: “Older workers bring with them a wealth of talent and experience as employees and entrepreneurs. They have a vital contribution to make to our economic recovery and long-term prosperity.”

The CBI has said the move will create uncertainty.

Work experience central, say students

July 16th, 2010   By   Filed Under: Everyone

Fri, 16 Jul 2010

Work experience is critical to standing out in the crowds, according to a survey by Vodafone.

The survey shows that 69% use work experience to help their job applications, while 34% take up volunteering to enhance their CV and increase their chances of a getting a job.

Almost half (45%) of students say the marketplace is becoming even more crowded, citing the huge growth in graduates is the main obstacle to getting a foot on the career ladder.

“Volunteering and work experience have become critical assets which young people today can use to enhance their attraction to employers,” said Vodafone UK graduate manager, Nicola Fitzgerald.

“Over 3,000 people applied for our 2010 graduate programme which offered 50 places. It was those people who communicated how their life experiences and personal interests added value to their academic successes who shone through both in their CVs and interviews.”