It was recently reported in USA Today that the country’s economy has recovered all of the 8.7 million jobs lost in the last recession. It was also touted as a sign that the economy was headed in the right direction and that many more people who were unemployed were back to work. However, the statistic did not address a growing issue involving older workers.
Essentially, those who are in their last decade or two before retirement face age discrimination as employers seek younger workers.
The bias is so prominent that many older job seekers have taken to altering their resumes so that they can get past initial screeners in order to get interviews. Gone are major accomplishments achieved in 1989 so that interviewers cannot do quick math to ascertain a person’s age.
Also gone from resumes are starting and ending dates for previous employment stints, as well as some jobs altogether, so that 25 years of experience can be masked. The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) prohibits employers from discriminating against workers over the age of 40 in hiring and termination decisions, but proving such cases can be difficult; especially for those who are out of work. As such, many workers over 50 have taken to altering their resumes, especially when they have been unemployed for an extended amount of time, ironically because employers are skeptical about their abilities since they have been unemployed for such a long time.
Nevertheless, many job coaches may cringe at the notion of tweaking one’s resume, or their online profile to hide a job seeker’s age, but it is certainly okay to do so.
Source: Ibtimes.com “Facing age discrimination, older job seekers edit job history and disguise their ages on resumes,” Angelo Young, June 10, 2014