Message to older workers: we love you, we want you but not just yet

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND – A growing shortage of qualified labour in Switzerland, according to research carried out for online employment agency, is encouraging companies to reconsider older workers. The prognosis for those over 50 is brighter than in the past, with 75 percent of companies saying they see recruitement of people over age 50 as a solution to the shortage of qualified workers.

That said, only 37 percent of them are actually regularly hiring people over age 50. And 34 percent say they do not want to keep people on as salaried employees once they reach age 65.

The research was carried out through interviews with 500 of Switzerland’s largest companies from November 2011 to March 2012. It indicates that companies consider close to 35 percent of jobs difficult to fill and they turn to neighbouring countries to look for applicants, particularly for IT and research and development posts. That figure is expected to climb to more than 46 percent by 2015. Combined with changing demographics, with an aging work force, older workers may have a better chance of finding work in the future.