Dismantling the most frequent prejudices associated with senior professionals

The SAVIA Generation project, which seeks to promote senior talent, has compiled a series of data that contradicts the five most frequent topics associated with group of workers over 50 years of age. Seniors are often thought to be incapable of adapting, that their knowledge is outdated, that their digital skills are weak, that they earn very high salaries, or that their health is worse than that of younger workers.

According to the latest Active Population Survey, 963,800 people over the age of 50 were unemployed between the months of January and March 2022. Thus, seniors now represent 30.35% of total unemployment registered in Spain, that is, almost one out of every three unemployed. These figures are largely due to the fact that there are still topics that obey stereotypes, prejudices and preconceived ideas about senior talent, which notably harm the hiring of professionals from this group.

In the words of Antonio Meraresponsible for the Savia project at the Endesa Foundation, the data “They dismantle the stereotypes and prejudices that exist around workers over 50 years of age and highlight the need for a change in mentality regarding senior talent in Spain”. In this sense, he recalls that seniors “accumulate years of experience, great knowledge and wisdom that are key for companies”.

The most frequent topics

  1. “Workers over 50 years of age have few digital skills”. The study “Senior professionals facing the challenge of teleworking”, prepared by Generación SAVIA, reveals that 95% of seniors deny that technology is an impediment to adapting to teleworking. 56.2% of the participants stated that technologies are a great ally and that they could not do without their use in the job search. Only one in ten seniors thinks that the digital divide is real.
  2. “The knowledge of senior workers is obsolete”. Senior workers are much more aware of the importance of lifelong learning, permanent updating or professional recycling, as shown by the “Generation SAVIA Study on the effects of the COVID-19 crisis and confinement on workers”. over 50 years unemployed. More than 70% of the seniors consulted stated that, during the worst months of the pandemic, they had chosen to prepare, train and keep their minds busy. Six out of ten established routines, among which the formative habits that can be applicable to the job search stand out.
  3. “Seniors have little ability to adapt to new work models”. The “Human Smart Working” report prepared by Fundación máshumano, Sagardoy Business&Law School and Zityhub concludes that remote work has been better assumed by the senior group than by the so-called millennial generations. In this context, workers over 50 years of age have developed more resilience, greater adaptation and have felt more comfortable working from home, without the added stress of commuting or strict schedules. The study highlights the important role of senior talent in difficult circumstances, such as those of the pandemic, due to their differential value, their experience, the serenity that age provides, as well as their important work as advisors and consultants.
  4. Seniors earn very high salaries.” According to the latest Active Population Survey. The gross monthly salary in Spain is 2,199.40 euros for a worker between 45 and 55 years of age and 2,361.19 euros for a person over 55 years of age; compared to the 1,723.71 euros received by young people between 25 and 34 years old. A difference that can be even more scarce if one takes into account the talent, the enormous experience and the accumulated wisdom that senior workers can bring to companies.
  5. “Senior workers enjoy worse health”. The “Senior Talent Map 2021”, prepared by the Mapfre Foundation, dismantles this topic and maintains that, along with life expectancy, the so-called “life expectancy in good health” is growing, which makes more than people who never In this sense, he recalls that demographic aging “is, in reality, a rejuvenation because it allows more people to live longer in good conditions.” In this sense, the Continuous Register Statistics prepared by the National Institute of Statistics reveals that, in just 20 years, the population aged 50 to 64 has gone from the 6,629,622 inhabitants that were counted in 2002, to 10,315,782 in the year 2022, that is, a difference of 3,686,160 more people.
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