Educational Training in the Multi-generational Workforce—Fact Sheet
compiled by Betty Cohen
July 2009—In a business environment with constantly changing technologies, employees who are not willing to learn and adapt will soon be obsolete in many fields. Likewise, employers who do not provide employees with the necessary resources and opportunities to develop new skills and expertise will lose employees who may have show themselves to be valuable, but have been outdated. The Sloan Center for Aging & Work’s 24th Fact Sheet– Education and Training in the Multi-generational Workplace–provides a look into work-related training and learning opportunities presented in the workplace.
Perhaps due to the stereotype that older workers are unwilling to adapt and learn new technologies, significantly more employers reported offering on the job training to early- and mid- career employees than to late-career employees. However, a recent AARP report showed that many older workers are willing and eager to expand their knowledge to new fields, especially to areas that would be beneficial in the workplace. According to the survey, 93% of workers over the age of 50 express a desire to learn new skills. This could be invaluable to employers looking to keep older workers an active part of the workforce.
Adjusting training programs to address the needs of employees at all career-levels and in all generations may serve to make older employees more valuable to their employers and enable them to remain competitive and adaptable in an ever-changing workplace.