71.9 percent of IT professionals believe ageism is more prevalent in the technology sector than in other industries and over half (50.6 percent) believe their search for work has been hindered because they were too old. Despite that, over one third (37.8 percent) are not aware of the new legislation that now outlaws ageism in the workplace. These are the findings of major new research carried out by online recruitment specialist, The IT Job Board.
The Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006, which came into force yesterday (1 October 2006), make it illegal for organisations to discriminate on the grounds of age. The legislation, which has been developed due to the government’s obligation to adopt a European directive on employment, will affect recruitment, training, promotion, redundancy, retirement, pay and pension provision.
In anticipation of the changes, The IT Job Board has commissioned two guides: ‘Top 10 tips for avoiding age discrimination’ is aimed at employers and provides straightforward information to ensure they understand the implications of the new legislation. ‘Top 10 tips to help candidates avoid age discrimination’ offers practical advice on how IT professionals can make the law work for them.
Ray Duggins, managing director of The IT Job Board, comments: “This is the biggest shake up in workplace anti-discrimination legislation for over a quarter of a century. Despite that, there is clearly a great deal of confusion about what it will entail, and the results of our research are extremely concerning. However, the material that we have developed is aimed at guiding employers through the new legal minefield, as well as providing employees with advice on what they can do to avoid being treated unfairly – and now illegally – due to their age in the first place.”
Other key findings from the research include:
• Of the 50.6% of respondents that believed their search for work has been hindered because they were too old, 36.7% said it had taken longer to get a job, 22.8% didn’t get their preferred position and 5.1% had been forced to take a pay cut.
• 12.5% of respondents believe their search for work has been hindered because they were too young. Of these, 23.1% said it had taken longer to get a job, 41% didn’t get their preferred position and 12.8% had been forced to take a pay cut.
• 14.5% of older workers had experienced lack of training due to their age, 10.8% had been turned down for a promotion, 6.2% didn’t receive a pay rise and 6.8% had been dismissed.
• 93.7% of respondents have had a boss that was younger than them.
• 49.9% of respondents do not believe it is possible to progress up the career ladder once they are over forty.
• When asked what benefits they believed older workers offered organisations, 43.1% responded with management/people skills, 42.8% experience directly related to the job, 41.5% life experience, 36.3% loyalty and 27.7% no commitments to young family that can conflict with work.
• 54% of respondents have a degree. Of these, 69.9% believe this has helped their career. Of the 43.6% of respondent that do not have a degree, 27.2% believe this has hindered their career.
• 22% of respondents left their previous job due to lack of career progression. 10.9% wanted a salary increase.
• 85.3% of respondents were male.
Duggins concludes: “Although the new laws rightly prevent ageism at either end of the spectrum our research conveys that, in the technology sector, it is older workers that are getting the raw deal. Regardless of the legal requirements, this sector of the population clearly has a lot to offer the IT industry, not only due to their vast experience, but also because of their loyalty and commitment to the job.”
For copies of The IT Job Board guides, please call +44 (0)20 7851 8451 or email contact[.]theitjobboard.com.
About The IT Job Board
The IT Job Board (theitjobboard.com / theitjobboard.co.uk) was set up in April 2002 in recognition that recruitment in the IT sector was increasingly dominated by the internet. It is now one of the leading IT specific job boards in the UK and Europe.
Online technology enables sophisticated targeting - for example by skill, region or experience - of The IT Job Board’s database of 650,000 IT professionals. It also offers employers services such as branded job postings, a featured employer zone, targeted email campaigns and guidance on advertising copy. The IT Job Board’s managed campaign service filters responses to provide companies with a shortlist of applicants most suitable for the advertised position.
IT Job Board clients include Accenture, Bloomberg, the British Council, Cap Gemini, Cisco Systems, Dell, IBM, Imperial College, LogicaCMG, Norwich Union, Notting Hill Housing Group, the Peabody Trust, Roche, Sage, T-Mobile and the University of Manchester.
For more information, please contact:
Nicola Males, IT Job Board PR
E: nicola[.]malespr.co.uk / T: +44(0)19 3283 0294.