Utah Careers Supplement for Workers Over 50
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Utah Careers Supplement for Workers Over 50, Helping experienced workers find their place in the workforce.

Utah Careers Supplement for Workers Over 50, Helping experienced workers find their place in the workforce.

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  • 1. utah careers supplement for February 2010 WorkersOver50 a career guide INSIDE: Finding Employment After 50 More Gold in Your Returning to Work Golden Years After Retirement What About Age Cover Letter Tips Discrimination? E L I N ubs/ E O Ns/wi/p D cm U I /open .html S G ov ex I h.g nd E T Hbs.uta orker/i jobs.utah.gov/wi S E tp://jo lderw t o at h
  • 2. Workers Over 50 Career Guide utah careers supplement for WorkersOver50 February 2010 a career guide INSIDE: Finding Employment After 50 More Gold in Your Returning to Work Golden Years After Retirement contents What About Age Cover Letter Tips Discrimination? E I N s/ N L i/pub E O s/w I D encm l G U /op .htm I S h.gov/index H uta E T bs. orker jobs.utah.gov/wi S E p://jo lderw htt o Finding Employment After Fifty .....................................................................................4 at 2 Job Ideas ...............................................................................................................................6 Information Overload? Separating Myths from Reality .........................................8 The Secret of My Husband’s Success ....................................................................... 10 Internet Resources ........................................................................................................ 12 Older Workers: Re-imagining Retirement .............................................................. 12 Cover Letters .................................................................................................................. 14 The Resume is Evolving ................................................................................................ 16 Just the Facts .................................................................................................................... 20 The Interview .................................................................................................................. 22 Staying Flexible ................................................................................................................ 24 Returning to Work After Retirement....................................................................... 26 Senior Community Service Employment Program.............................................. 28 More Gold in Your Golden Years............................................................................... 30 Funding Educational Pursuits in the Midst of a Career Change........................................................................................................ 32 Navigating the Health Insurance Jungle ................................................................... 34 Your Rights Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ..................................................................................................... 36 UtahFutures.org .............................................................................................................. 38 2 February 2010
  • 3. Utah Department of Workforce Services Executive Director Kristen Cox Workforce Research and Analysis Rick Little, Director Contributors Carrie Mayne Kimberley Bartel Connie Blaine Mickie Douglas Michael Hanni John Krantz Lecia Langston Linda Marling Church Charlotte Kuhn Heather Morrison Scott Brown Designer Pat Swenson Age is an asset. Experience, a benefit. SCSEP www.utahagingservices.org Senior Community ServiCe jobs.utah.gov employment program Equal Opportunity Employer/Program To obtain additional printed copies Auxiliary aids and services contact: are available upon request to individuals with disabilities Department of Workforce Services The Workforce Development and Information by calling (801) 526-9240. Attn: WRAA Division generates accurate, timely, and Individuals with speech 140 East 300 South understandable data and analyses to provide and/or hearing impairments knowledge of ever-changing workforce may call the Relay Utah Salt Lake City, UT 84111 environments that support sound planning by dialing 711. Telephone: (801) 526-9462 and decision-making. Spanish Relay Utah: Fax: (801) 526-9238 1-888-346-3162. Email: wipublications@utah.gov DWS 03-31-0210 jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 3
  • 4. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 4 Finding Employment After 50 Be prepared to convince employers you aren’t too old to learn and you can work as hard as younger people. By CONNIE BLAINE F inding employment after the age of 50 can be challenging. Prejudice against older workers can still be a factor in the market and workers over 50 should be prepared to convince prospective employers that they aren’t too old to learn new things and they have the energy to work as hard as people in their 20s. Companies are looking for workers who can easily adapt to change, have current skills, learn new things and are technology savvy. Here are some tips to help you get that job: • If you’ve been laid off, look for a new job immediately. The longer you’re unemployed, the more it works against you. • Look for companies that like to recruit older workers. Do Internet searches with words like, “older workers” “workers over 50” etc. to find these. • Networking may be your best tool. Tell all your friends, ex-colleagues, and others that you are looking for work. Use the LinkedIn web 4 February 2010
  • 5. Use the resources that are available to you. There are many resources throughout this publication. site; professional associations, volunteering or • Keep your skills current. Focus on computer consulting to network. Networking is especially skills including the Internet and word- important if you are seeking a high-level processing, spreadsheet, database and position. presentation applications. Take courses, seminars or workshops to keep up with the • Target the maximum number of potential latest developments in your profession, and the employers. The sad fact is that there is current technology. Tell prospective employers discrimination against older workers. that you are willing and able to learn. Compensate for that by applying at more places than you might have in the past. • Emphasize the assets of an older worker, and your ability to learn. Use words like “adaptable,” • If you think you have the skills, consider “flexible,” and “dependable.” Focus on your starting your own business – and hire older experience, stability, frugality and strong work workers! ethic. See the article in this publication on • Research the company before you interview. interviews for more tips. Use that information to show how your • NEVER talk down to a youthful interviewer. skills, experience, knowledge and abilities can Never talk about the old days or “the way we enhance their bottom line. did it.” It’s also a good idea to update your • You might try working for a temp agency. In wardrobe and hair style. addition to the income, you may be able to turn • Keep a positive attitude. Never say anything a temporary job into a permanent one. negative about previous bosses or companies you’ve worked for. Have a “can do” attitude. • Consider working shifts that younger people with children might not work. • Reassure the interviewer that you want to do the job you are applying for, and that you • A traditional, chronological resume may intend to stay for a long time. work against you. Typically screeners are in their 20s or 30s. They may scan your • When it comes to money, be prepared to settle resume and say to themselves, “Wow, this for less than you were making before (if you’ve guy graduated from college before I was been laid off ). Avoid the topic of specific wages born!” It may work better for you to remove during the interview and negotiate for salary after the dates of graduations and all jobs except you’ve been offered the job. If you’ve made more your last from your resume. Emphasize only in prior jobs than the current employer is willing the last ten years of employment. Do not use to pay, it may result in being weeded out, so keep an old resume; tailor a new one to your new that under your hat. Find out what people in your circumstances. See the article on resumes in prospective occupation are making at: http://jobs. this publication for more tips. utah.gov/jsp/wi/utalmis/gotoOccwage.do.  jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 5
  • 6. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 6 Job Ideas Are you 50-something? The job search is different now than when you were 20-something. By CARRIE MAyNE D o you find yourself career goals. Here are some And oftentimes there are past the big 5-0 and suggestions for picking just the programs available to help diving into that pool right job: you with training expenses. we call the labor force? If so, Contact your local DWS you may want to think a little • Evaluate your transferable office for more information. differently about your job search skills—Over your life you’ve acquired many useful • Part-time work—If you’re than you did when you were skills, whether it was in a willing and able to work part- 20-something. What you want previous career or through time instead of full-time, out of your work life is probably other life experiences. you’ll definitely expand the very different than it was a few You’d be surprised to see number and types of jobs decades ago. Your skills and how skills can transfer available to you. For some abilities have probably changed across occupations. The occupations, part-time work as well. Department of Workforce is the norm. And let’s face it, even though Services (DWS) offers an And what may be the most there are laws against age online tool that can help you important suggestion is to target discrimination, most people discover jobs you may already jobs that tend to be older- over 50 find it more difficult to be qualified for. Find it at: worker friendly. There are some obtain a job. One thing that http://jobs.utah.gov/jsp/wi/ occupations where employers will surely make things easier utalmis/reemplHome.do. see an advantage to employing for you is to be strategic when the more seasoned worker over you choose the career fields you • Training—There are many training programs available the younger, less experienced pursue. folks. Here is a list of some jobs where, in just a short amount Picking the right occupations of time, you’ll be taught to that can fit this description: can help you quickly find a perform a job you may not • Teacher assistant—education job that will fit your unique currently be qualified to do. occupations continue to 6 February 2010
  • 7. grow in the face of economic require some security-related downturns, so if you like experience. working with children this • English instructor—Ever is a great career for you. thought of spending time In most cases, only some in another country? Many short on-the-job training is employers (public and private) necessary to qualify. in other countries offer • Consultant—outsourcing language instruction jobs to project management, native English speakers. A marketing, and quality control three- to six-month training is very common nowadays. may be required, but in If you have experience in most cases you’ll be paid to any of these fields, you may complete the program. want to reach out to past • Home care assistant—If work contacts to look for you’ve gained experience in opportunities. There are also caring for people in need companies who, for a fee, will over the years (whether it be help consultants find work. paid or unpaid), then you’ve • Customer greeter—Wal already got a jump-start in Mart isn’t the only store in pursuing a job as a home care town anymore who’s taking assistant. You may still need advantage of greeters to some on-the-job training, convey a friendly atmosphere but you’ll find that these jobs in their shops. aren’t too tough to come by. • Tour guide—Is there a One final note of caution: preda- museum, park, or hospitality- tors are out there targeting older based business that you workers searching for employ- love? Become a tour guide ment. You should never have to and share your passion with pay to obtain a job, nor should others. you have to give bank account or credit card information. • Security screener—The Transportation Security Some “pay to play” job oppor- Administration is often tunities are just bogus scams to looking for airport screeners take your money. Research the to fill both part and full- employer thoroughly to ensure time positions and is known they are a legitimate company for being “older worker that really is looking to hire be- friendly”. Keep in mind fore you start building a relation- that the positions typically ship with them.  jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 7
  • 8. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 8 Information Overload? separating Myth From Reality Myth: Employers don’t like to hire people over 50. Reality: Many people in their sixties, seventies and even eighties are still working. Myth: Older workers are less flexible and adaptable. Reality: Older workers are just as adaptable once they understand the reason for changes. They are more likely to ask “why?” because they have seen processes abandoned in mid-stream. Myth: Older workers face Remember that Information is power; the more you know, health issues. the better you will be able to separate myth from reality. Reality: Older workers have By LECIA pARks LANGsTON, ECONOMIsT better attendance records than younger workers. Myth: Older workers can’t meet the physical demands of the job. Reality: Most jobs do not require great strength or heavy lifting. 8 February 2010
  • 9. Myth: You can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Myth: Older workers are not as creative or innovative. Reality: Studies show only a negligible loss of cognitive function in people under 70. They have Reality: General intelligence levels are the same better study attitudes and accumulated experience as those of younger workers. Roughly 80 percent of which lowers training costs. For example, the the most workable and worthwhile new production fastest-growing group of Internet users is people ideas are produced by employees over 40 years old. over 50. Myth: Older workers cost more than hiring Myth: Training older workers is a lost invest- younger workers. ment because they will not stay on the job for long. Reality: Replacing older workers is not cost- Reality: The future work life of an employee free. Aetna Insurance Company discovered that over 50 usually exceeds the life of new technology training, etc. added 93 percent to the first year’s for which the workers are trained. Plus, workers salary of new employees. tend to stay in the labor force much longer now than they did in the past. Myth: Benefit and accident costs are higher for older workers. Myth: Older workers are not as productive as younger workers. Reality: Total sick days per year of older workers are lower than other age groups because Reality: Overall productivity does not decline they have fewer acute illnesses and sporadic sick as a function of age. Productivity can actually rise days. Insurance costs do rise gradually with age. due to greater worker accuracy, dependability and However, they are offset by lower costs due to capacity to make better on-the-spot judgments. fewer dependents. Older workers take fewer risks Older workers’ production rates are steadier than in accident-prone situations and statistically have other age groups. lower accident rates than other age groups.  jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 9
  • 10. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 10 The secret of My Husband’s success. . . T his article gets really time since he’d done any serious position are still struggling with personal—because early job searching. And, did I mention unemployment, Brad’s been on the in 2009, the recession hit we’re in the midst of the longest job for six months and is making home in a major way in my own recession in recent memory? money in a thorny economy. family. Although I don’t think of And, did I also mention we just Attitude, Attitude, Attitude my spouse and myself as “older” happen to live in Washington Why has Brad succeeded when (I feel about 23 inside my head), County where the downturn has so many are still jobless? I’ve we certainly fall in the age group been particularly fierce? I have to decided that a positive attitude targeted by this publication. admit, it’s not an experience we’ve equaled success for Brad. I know relished. If you are reading this article, you it sounds cliché, but it’s true. He can probably relate to the dismay However, it has been a learning was confident that he could find we felt when my husband’s job of experience. And, by proxy, I’ve a new job that he liked doing. nearly 20 years became a casualty discovered firsthand that the advice (He tells me he’s enjoyed every of the economic downturn. Brad in this publication does indeed job he’s ever had including hot- is 54 years old and it’s been a long work. While many people in his tar roofing—go figure.) He was A true story of an older worker’s triumph in the job market. By LECIA pARks LANGsTON, ECONOMIsT Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference. —Winston Churchill 10 February 2010
  • 11. confident that he would be hired Brad built upon his years of job but also in establishing a new despite his grey hair. He believed experience and community career, has proved exemplary and he had marketable skills. Some of connections. In his current position, has helped him succeed. this confidence was inherent in his my husband’s long years of I’m very proud of my husband. nature, some of it he learned along community service and personal In the midst of this employment the way. (His new boss recently relations have helped him to be far setback, his father suffered a major told him that his confidence that more successful than his younger stroke, which required a huge he could do the job was a major colleagues. By virtue of your age amount of Brad’s time and energy. factor in his hire.) and experience, you truly do have Eventually, his father passed away. an edge over younger workers in Along with the “good attitude,” Yet, Brad never wallowed in self- many, many jobs. here are the things that I believe pity over his employment situation. Brad did right that resulted in his Brad had good technical skills. He got out and did what needed to eventual employment. My husband’s prior occupation be done to find a new job. was technically oriented, so he Brad enrolled in a seminar that Brad is working hard at a new had great computer skills. Even taught him how to look for work. career and he’s just been elected though his current job is not Here he learned about resume as a city councilman for our highly technical, it was important writing, networking, interviewing, small, southern Utah town. We’ve that he could e-mail, do Internet etc. Here he also discovered and been able to pay all our bills and job searches, submit an electronic focused on his marketable skills. even extra on our mortgage. We resume, etc. to get hired. If you Brad found out he had many aren’t quite back to where we don’t have these skills, they can be talents and abilities. He also were income-wise and living learned. They are very important in determined exactly what he wanted with uncertainty has definitely today’s job market! from his new job. This seminar been stressful. However, some of happened to be through our church Brad was not afraid to learn. In my husband’s positive attitude affiliation. However, many job- establishing his new career, Brad has rubbed off on me and I am search workshops are available— had to pass several licensing exams. confident we’ll end up in an including through the Department Could this “old guy” learn and even better financial position of Workforce Services. remember? You bet. He discovered than before. Hurrah for age and age is no barrier to learning. experience!  Brad was very flexible. After While his retention wasn’t quite as his lay-off, we considered many good as in his 20s, because of his options including training for determination and work ethic, Brad a new career, moving to an area was able to pass his exams much where his skills were more in- easier than most of the “young demand, etc. Brad didn’t stay stuck Turks” in his training group. Yes, thinking he could only do what you too can learn new skills! he’d always done. He was willing to change careers and try something Brad has worked hard. His work entirely new. ethic, not only in looking for a jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50Worker Guide Older Career 11
  • 12. Workers Over 50 Career Guide Workers Over 50 Career Guide Internet Resources • http://www.nowcc.org—the National Older Worker Career Center site. • http://www.aarp.org/money/work/ —the Older Workers: American Association for Retired Persons’ “money and work” web page. Re-imagining Retirement 12 • http://www.ncoa.org—the National you might be surprised to know that 54 Council on the Aging operates this site. percent of workers age 65 and over work Click on “Work and Volunteering.” because they want to work. • http://seniors.utah.gov—click on By LINdA MARLING CHURCH “Employment.” B • http://www.quintcareers.com/mature_ y now we have all heard dramatic jobseekers.html—employment resources for stories about older workers who older workers. can no longer retire, or who have been forced back into the workforce • http://www.retiredbrains.com—job board because they need the income. For some, for older workers; search job listings, post that is true. For others, who have chosen your resume, and register for an e-mail job- to stay in or re-enter the workforce for a search agent. Also includes career resources variety of reasons, it is not true. specifically for older workers. In a recent study by the Pew Research • http://www.seniorjobbank.org—a job site for Center, it was found that 54 percent of job seekers aged 50+ where you can search for workers age 65 and older say they work jobs by job category, industry, location, as well because they want to, 27 percent because as post multiple resumes and register for a job- they want and need to, and 17 percent search agent. because they have to. Surprised? In that • http://jobs.utah.gov—Utah Department of same study, it was found that 54 percent Workforce Services’ site with electronic job of workers 65 and older were “completely board, employment tips, etc. satisfied” with their jobs compared with 29 percent of workers ages 16 to 64. That • http://career-advice.monster.com—career satisfaction may come from the fact that advice for older workers from monster.com they are working by choice, not necessity. • http://utahfutures.org—career information Myths exist in the workplace that it costs tool for students, adults, seniors. more to employ an older worker, that • http://www.abanet.org/aging—the American they are technologically inept, and that Bar Association’s site on law and aging. they are less adaptable to change—all of which have been repudiated more than • http://www.ncoa.org/content. once by demographic studies. cfm?sectionID=304—National Council on the Aging, Work and Volunteering page. Who said that we work to 65 and then retire and start riding around in a golf 12 February 2010
  • 13. Work Because you Need To? It depends On your Age % of workers who say they work because they . . . Need the money Want to work Both Ages 16-64 49 20 31 Ages 65 and older 17 54 27 Note: Asked of 1,140 respondents employed full-time or part-time. “Don’t know/Refused” responses are not shown. Source: Pew Research Center. cart in Boca Raton or Apache their lowest share since 1948. feel like a useful person, help Junction, eating dinner at four in The BLS projects that 92.8 improve society, something to the afternoon and going to bed percent of the growth of the do, be with other people, to live at eight? For some, this is the U.S. labor force from 2006 to independently, stay physically second American dream. For 2016 will be workers ages 55 and mentally active, and to others, it’s Hell on earth. and older. The share of the labor learn something new, were force that is 55 and older will some of the comments given The Pew study found that 57 increase to 22.7 percent in 2016. to researchers who asked older percent of retirees were very At the same time, the shares of workers why they were still in satisfied with their retirement, the other major age groups the workforce. 27 percent were fairly satisfied, will decline. 32 percent had to retire for One older worker, who health or other reasons, 9% said Younger workers had been retired for they were forced into retirement are staying out of five years and was by their employers. The key to the workplace to get continued satisfaction at any age is to be a degree (73 percent of doing what you choose to do the public deem a degree whether it is to retire or to work the means for getting or a combination. ahead.) Older workers are staying in the People ages 55 and older workplace, delaying currently account for 18.7 their retirement percent of the workforce, because of the according to the U.S. Bureau recession or by of Labor Statistics (BLS). That choice. is the highest share held by the group since the BLS started It’s a given that reporting labor force data in many older workers 1948. Conversely, workers ages are choosing to stay 16 to 24 currently account for employed. What are 14.0 percent of the labor force, some reasons? To jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 13
  • 14. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 14 Cover Letters A cover letter is a great way to sell yourself. By kIMBERLEy BARTEL, ECONOMIsT working on her golf handicap, took a job because she A was bored with “playing” and wanted to feel productive n impressive cover letter is a good again. She found a flexible, part-time job in a new field, way for older workers to convince far removed from the retail business she had started employers to interview them for the thirty years prior. She found that with a part-time job jobs they want. What is a cover letter? It is she could be productive and still work on her golf game. basically a marketing tool for you. Your resume contains factual information about your skills Another, who had been forced to retire by his employer, and accomplishments, while your cover letter is started as a volunteer at a local senior citizen center, and an opportunity to sell yourself to the employer. quickly became the paid director. He particularly liked helping his peers to see their retirement in a new way by It is a short letter (no more than one page) starting classes that taught them about computers, travel written to a specific person about a specific job and volunteer opportunities. that contains three parts: At age 88, after twenty years on the job, beginning at First paragraph: Explain why you are writing an age when most people have retired, one older worker and mention the job you want. Do not start began preparing twenty-four meals every day for area with the sentence “I am writing about the seniors. position…” Learn something about the company that you can write about in this Maybe older workers today are leery of that old paragraph or if you have been referred to the adage “you retire, you die.” Working, staying company, mention the person’s name. mentally and physically active, and involved may not make us live any longer, but they can make the Second paragraph: Sell yourself and show remaining hours and days more fulfilling.  off your writing skills. Write about all of the skills, knowledge and abilities you have that For more information: will benefit the company/organization. Do not http://pewsocialtrends.org write about what they can do for you. Focus http://www.utah.gov/seniors/ on your accomplishments and performance http://www.hsdaas.utah.gov/pdf/aging-initiative.pdf that are related to the job you are applying for, not the number of years you have worked or a long history of your experience. This is an opportunity to use current industry jargon and 14 February 2010
  • 15. This is your opportunity to convince the employer to interview you for the job you want! to mention your up-to-date technical skills. Use key words from the posted job description. Don’t rewrite your resume, since it will accompany this letter, but you can refer to it. Third paragraph: Write that Sample From Cover Letters That Knock ‘em Dead, by Martin Yate you are very interested in the job and would like to work for the company. Indicate what the next tailored to each job you really content, grammar, and tone steps will be. Do not write, “You want. before you send it. Your cover can contact me at…” rather, re- letter should communicate Don’t send a cover letter that your energy and ability to meet quest an interview and let them has mistakes in it. the employer’s needs. Spelling, know when you will contact them. Include your contact in- grammar and punctuation Don’t forget to sign it—blue ink formation. should be perfect. is best so the employer can tell Some Don’ts: that it is an original signature. If you are emailing your cover letter, make sure that all three Don’t include salary informa- Don’t address the letter “Dear paragraphs fit on the screen so tion. After you’ve been offered Sir” or “Gentlemen” if you don’t the employer doesn’t have to the job, negotiate for salary. know whom you are sending the scroll.  Don’t copy a cover letter you letter to because these terms are find on the Internet, write it in outdated. Use “Dear Director of Human Resources” or some- A cover letter is a great your own words because it will more likely catch the employer’s thing similar to make sure it way to sell yourself and attention. gets to the right person. an excellent one can get Don’t send the same cover letter Make sure someone you trust you the interview. for every job, write a new letter edits your cover letter for jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 15
  • 16. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 16 The Resume is Evolving There seem to be new ways of writing and submitting resumes as many people compete for jobs during this economic downturn. By kIMBERLEy BARTEL, ECONOMIsT T imes are changing and Show the employer that you are typing in the word “resume.” so are the ways people a good fit for the job and will There are also many books on write and submit be valuable to the company. resume writing. Rather than resumes to employers. Gone are Tailor each resume you send to simply taking off a few lines at the days of the simple resume the particular job. This means the bottom of your resume and rules that everyone followed: creating the resume to fit the adding a few job duties to the write a one-to-two page resume employer and the job. Make sure top, it is worthwhile for you to in chronological format, print you incorporate key words from do some research and develop a it on nice paper and send it to the job description into your resume that will get results. many employers. resume. Here are some additional tips If you research resumes, you Consider including an for people with a long work will find that some experts “accomplishments” section rather history: still recommend the two-page than an “experience” section. resume, but there seem to Evidently employers no longer • Don’t put your entire work be new ways of writing and place a lot of value on experience, history on your resume. As a submitting resumes as many they want to know what you can standard rule go back 10 to people compete for jobs during do for their company. 15 years. However, if earlier this economic downturn and jobs are relevant, list them. they use technology to assist You can find resume writing them. Two pieces of valuable tips and examples of resumes • Your resume can be more advice for modern resumes seem on the Internet by using a than one page. Use your to be: search engine like Google and common sense. If it takes 16 February 2010
  • 17. Resume Tips : •Target specific companies where you want to work and tailor your resume to fit that employer. •Do not send 500 cookie-cutter resumes out and expect a response. •Try to send or email your resume to a specific person at the company. •Be careful about posting your resume on job search web sites—make sure you understand •Consider posting your resume on a how and where it will be posted. networking site such as Linkedin. more than two pages to this is a good strategy while your skills and knowledge list all of the information others say it could look like up-to-date. necessary to get you an you are trying to hide some- interview, it can be more than thing. Eliminating college • List technical and computer two pages. But as a standard, graduation dates, but includ- skills and make sure they are try to keep it to two pages. ing employment dates is an- current. Don’t list software, other suggestion. systems, or computer lan- • Emphasize your current guage that is no longer com- accomplishments related • Tone down your resume for a monly used. to the job. Don’t list every job if you think you might be outstanding accomplishment viewed as over-qualified. • Research the company. This you have had during the will help you write a resume past 15 years because it will • Use current industry termi- that is tailored to the job and date you and the hiring nology because it will make will also help you use indus- manager is most interested your resume more up-to-date. try language. in what you have done lately Hiring managers will likely • Put your email address as a that is related to the job be drawn to resumes using method to contact you. requirements. familiar words. • Make sure there are no • Consider eliminating all • List professional develop- mistakes. dates and just listing the ment, trainings, workshops, number of years in each job. and new certifications that Resume experts encourage a mix Some resume experts agree demonstrate you have kept of the chronological or function- continued jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 17
  • 18. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 18 The Resume is Evolving Cont. As you write your resume, look to the future rather than dwelling on the past. al resume format or a functional will find the key words in the job format. The chronological resume announcement. is the more standard format and Key words are usually industry jar- hiring managers are accustomed to gon or job requirements common- seeing it. It lists the jobs you have ly associated with that job. This had starting with the most current. type of resume is usually sent in an Functional resumes can be used if email or cut and pasted online. you are changing careers, have gaps in your work history or want to As you write your resume, look to emphasize overall skills rather than the future rather than dwelling on work history. This type of resume the past. You don’t want the tone emphasizes your skills by listing of your resume to be a list of things groups of skills first, followed by you have done for other employers. your work history. Write it in a way that commu- It is important to have an elec- nicates what you can do for the tronic resume. This is a version of employer that is lucky enough to your resume that is not formatted. hire you. You should take out all bold, italics, centering, etc. If you are submit- Once you have written a resume ting your resume online make sure that reflects all of your amazing you use key words because the skills and accomplishments, you employer may have a system that will no longer be yawning, but feel- scans resumes for these words. You ing quite proud and confident.  18 February 2010
  • 19. Employment Facts: • In 2008, over 15 percent of Americans 65-years and older were in the labor force. They constituted nearly 4 percent of the U.S. labor force. • In Utah during 2008, roughly 16 percent of the 65-plus population were in the labor force. They constitute nearly 3 percent of the Utah labor force. • In 2008, 3.9 percent of older Americans were unemployed compared to 4.2 percent of the total labor force. • Labor force participation rates of older men have fallen dramatically since 1950 when they registered 46 percent. Today, only 21 percent of 65-plus men are in the labor force. • After decreasing between the 1950s and the 1980s, labor force participation for older Americans plateaued during the first half of the 1990s. However, during the last decade, labor force participation has been gradually rising—especially among those between the ages of 65 and 69. • As older workers continue to work, they are more likely to work part-time. About 10 percent of men aged 55-64 work part-time compared to almost half of employed men over 70. jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 19
  • 20. Workers Over 50 Career Guide By LECIA pARks LANGsTON, ECONOMIsT Just the 20 Facts Population • In 2008, older Americans—those 65 years and as the U.S. baby boom generation reaches and sur- older—represented 13 percent of the U.S. popula- passes 65. tion. In Utah, this group comprised 9 percent of the population. • The U.S. population 65 and over is expected to in- crease by 15 percent between 2000 and 2010 and • In the U.S. there are 136 older women for every by 36 percent between 2010 and 2020. 100 older men. In Utah, the ratio measures 122 older women for every 100 older men. • By 2030, the older population is expected be al- most twice the number in that age group during • Older U.S. women make up almost 15 percent 2005. By 2030, older Americans should account of the female population compared to Utah for about one-fifth of the U.S. population. where older women make up 10 percent of the population. • In the U.S., almost 80 percent of 65-plus individu- als lived in metropolitan areas in 2008. • Men 65 and older make up 11 percent of the male population in the United States compared to • In 2008, over one-half of the 65-plus population Utah where older men make up 8 percent of the lived in only nine states—California, Florida, New population. York, Texas, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Ohio, Michi- gan, and New Jersey. • Since 1900, the share of Americans 65 years and older has tripled from 4.1 percent to 12.7 percent • States with the highest shares of older populations in 2008. include Florida (17 percent), West Virginia (16 percent), Pennsylvania (15 percent), Maine (15 • Nationally, individuals between the ages of 55 and percent), Hawaii (15 percent), Iowa (15 percent), 64 comprise 11 percent of the population. In Utah, North Dakota (15 percent), South Dakota (14 they show an 8-percent share of the population. percent), and Rhode Island (14 percent). • Baby boomers will be responsible for the next • Alaska shows the lowest share 65-plus population population boom—in seniors. The older popula- at 7 percent. Utah ranks second-lowest with 9 per- tion will expand rapidly between 2010 and 2030 cent 65 and older. 20 February 2010
  • 21. • States with rapidly growing senior populations • In Utah during 2008, almost 32,000 households between 1996 and 2006 included Nevada (up 50 showed grandparents living with grandchildren. percent), Alaska (up 46 percent), Arizona (up 35 In 12,000 of those households, grandparents were percent), Utah (up 29 percent), New Mexico (up responsible for their live-in grandchildren under 28 percent), Idaho (up 25 percent), and Georgia the age of 18. (up 25 percent). • Roughly 4 percent of the 65-plus population in 2006 lived in institutional settings such as nursing Demographic Characteristics homes. However, 15 percent of persons 85 and • In the U.S. during 2008, men 65 and older were older lived in institutional housing. much more likely to be married than comparably • Non-Hispanic whites accounted for nearly 80 aged women (73 percent of men compared to 41 percent of the 65-and-older population in the U.S percent of women). Women are much more likely in 2008. Blacks, Asians, and Hispanics account for to be widowed. 8 percent, 3 percent, and 7 percent, respectively. • In Utah, more than 80 percent of 65-plus men • During 2008, non-Hispanic whites accounted for were married compared to 51 percent of 65-plus nearly 93 percent of the 65-and-older population women in Utah. Blacks, Asians, and Hispanics account • Roughly 42 percent of older U.S. women in 2008 for 0.3 percent, 1.3 percent, and 4 percent, were widows. There were over four times as many respectively. widows as widowers. In Utah, 36 percent of • Education among older Americans has increased women were widowed. dramatically. In 1970, only 28 percent of the 65-plus-population had completed high school • Divorced persons 65 and older represented about compared to 76 percent in 2008. In 2008, one- 10 percent of older persons in 2008—up from 5 fifth of this age group had a bachelor’s degree. percent in 1980. Similarly, 10 percent of Utah’s older population was divorced in 2008. • In Utah during 2008, 86 percent of older men and women had completed high school. In addition, • In 2008, 4.1 million U.S. households showed 25 percent of the state’s 65 and older population grandparents living with grandchildren. In 1.8 had at least a bachelor’s degree. million of those households, grandparents were responsible for their grandchildren under the age • Average life expectancy at birth has risen from 47 of 18. years in 1900 to 77 in 2000. jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 21
  • 22. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 22 The Job Interview during the interview, you want to show that you can work well with all ages and that everyone can learn from one another and respect each other. By kIMBERLEy BARTEL, ECONOMIsT I f you get a job interview this generally Listen carefully to the questions and make sure means you are qualified to do the job. The you answer them directly. hiring manager wants to confirm your For older workers, the interview is a great qualifications and make sure you are a good opportunity to dispel stereotypes and myths. fit for the job and the company. If you haven’t Demonstrate that you are positive, energetic, interviewed for jobs recently, you will want dedicated, and that you will contribute to to make sure you take time to prepare for the the success of the company. Show that you interview. are technically savvy by incorporating your First, it is important for you to make computer skills into your answers and show a connection with the people who are that you are energetic by talking about physical interviewing you. Second, frame your responses activities you pursue. Emphasize that you are to the questions in ways that show hiring flexible and open to learning new things. you will benefit the organization. You can There is a good chance interviewers will be accomplish this by researching the company younger than you are. Do not talk down to them before the interview and practicing your or say that you won’t need any training for the responses to questions. job. You have an opportunity to show that you Interviews can be stressful. Keep in mind that can be respectful and work well with younger interviewers are trying to impress you just as you people, including a supervisor who is younger are trying to impress them. View the interview than you are. Do not have the attitude that since as an opportunity for both parties to gather you are older you know more than your younger information to determine if it is a good match. peers. You want to show that you can work well 22 February 2010
  • 23. with all ages and that everyone can learn from one ing the interview, say you expect to be paid the another and respect each other. average wages for a similar worker in your area. You could also say you are willing to start a little Preparing for an Interview: lower if there is room to work your way up. • Interviews are fairly predictable, so practice. However, avoid giving an actual figure until they Have a friend give you questions such as “Tell offer you the job or give you their figure. me about yourself.” The more you practice the better your interview will go. Also practice an- • There are a lot of older workers in the workforce swers for questions such as “Do you think you’re now, so you are not alone. Be comfortable and overqualified?” Even if the interviewer doesn’t confident at the interview. Look your best and ask this question, you may want to address it if dress in modern clothes with a modern haircut, you think it might be an issue. For example, you but don’t feel like you have to dress like a teen- could say, “I am very excited about the opportu- ager. It is important to feel good about your ap- nity to work in this job and to continue learning pearance, but since looks matter, it is important while I utilize my current skills and abilities.” to look modern and professional. Talk about how you like to learn new things, a • Find out what type of interview it will be and new skill you have learned recently, your strong who will be interviewing you. work ethic, and the range of skills and knowl- edge you bring to the job. • Ask at least one question at the end of the inter- view. Do not ask about the pay or benefits. Ask • Don’t talk about your “many years of experi- about opportunities for advancement or what a ence.” Focus instead on your successes at work. typical day is like in the job. This shows you are • Think about your most important accomplish- interested. ments and skills so you can focus on those • Finally, don’t be afraid to say that you want the things during the interview, and make sure you job at the end of the interview. If you want the communicate them by incorporating them into job, say that it sounds interesting and a good your responses. Make sure your responses are fit for you, say you admire the organization and positive. Don’t say negative things about work, want to work there. Demonstrate your knowl- co-workers, or past employers. edge of the company.  • This is a good opportunity to talk about any time gaps in your resume. You might want to say that you tried retirement and it is not for you because you like to work. You might say that you Don’t forget to send a thank- took some time to learn something new, make a change, or to take care of a family member. you note to the interviewers. • Talk about new skills you have attained and how This will make you stand out you stay current in your industry/job. from the others and put your • There may be a concern that they can’t afford your salary. Do not bring this topic up until name in front of them again. they offer you the job. If they bring it up dur- jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 23
  • 24. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 24 Staying Flexible A lmost any list of job-seeking tips for Examine and determine your own skill-set needs. seniors includes a section on “keeping your Before you can update your skill set, you need skills current and remaining flexible.” With to know what skills are in demand. Find out the rapid increases in technology, today’s workplace cutting edge skills for your occupation and learn requires workers who are willing to learn and them. change with the job. To stay employable, older Be sure to boost your software skills. Jobs ranging workers must be continually updating their skill from clerical work to retail sales now require set. Finally, in a tough labor market, flexibility and some expertise with computers—particularly a trainability are increasingly important. working knowledge of the Microsoft Windows Some Tips environment. Search out the “in-demand” software Take advantage of available training opportunities. skills. You may find related tutorials offered by area If you are already employed, make sure to get community colleges, your local library, embedded that competitive edge by taking any training your in the software or on the Web. “If people don’t employer offers. Be the first to learn the updated have these skills, they’re shooting themselves in software package. Don’t hang on to the old the foot,” says career counselor Linsey Levine of technologies. CareerCounsel. Conquer your fear. Don’t be afraid to take a class at the local community college or through continuing education programs. More and more older students are upgrading their Today’s workplace requires workers who are willing to learn and change with the job. 24 February 2010
  • 25. More Facts centage of women without a pension decreased from 48 percent in 1994 to 37 • In many important respects, people near- percent in 2004. The percentage of men ing 65 today are at least as financially without pensions has remained steady at prepared for retirement as the same age about 25 percent. group was 10 or 20 years ago. Incomes, • Women receive lower retirement benefits education, and net worth are all up for than men. the current age group heading towards retirement. • About 80 percent of those 65 years and older have at least one chronic health • Pension coverage for women has in- condition and 50 percent have at least creased over the past decade. The per- two. skills. Chances are you won’t be Search out resources for training. you let people know you have the only “older” student in the There are an amazing number them. You might want to think class. of resources for upgrading your about two things: experience skills—particularly your com- and work samples. Volunteer Know at least the computer basics: puter skills. work can help increase your skill • Basic skills to operate a com- levels. When you update your puter, such as handling a Often training is free or close skills as technology advances, computer mouse, typing on a to it. Libraries, senior centers, it shows that you are someone keyboard, and navigating file learning centers, adult or con- who loves learning. It will give systems and menus. tinuing education programs, employers the impression that community colleges and online • Microsoft Office programs, you are resilient and adaptable. tutorials can all help you up- with particular attention to grade your skills. Make sure your resume and Word, Excel and Power- the way you send it reflect your Point—roughly in that order. A library is often the best start- skills. If you can’t e-mail your ing point, as libraries typically • Essential Internet skills, such resume, it signals that you may have computers available for as e-mail, web browsing and not be wired to the Internet or patrons’ use and may even offer searching. comfortable using e-mail. It also brief computer classes (or know indicates you don’t understand Enlist others in getting started. of the best local options). that recruiters need resumes Find a reverse mentor—a Once you take training, be sure to that are in data form so they can younger person who can guide practice. Any skill not put to use search the text. you in updating your skills. will deteriorate and evaporate if When it comes to computers it isn’t used. Plus, the best way Many employers only accept and software, your children, to learn a software package is to electronic resumes. You can ob- grandchildren or friends can actually use it in several projects. tain a free e-mail account from be a great resource. If you aren’t You’ll forget what you’ve learned your Internet service provider or sure how up-to-date your skills if you don’t use it! other web sites such as hotmail are, you might want to visit a (www.hotmail.com) and google temporary employment agency Be sure to market your new skills. (www.google.com; click on and take their tests. New skills will aid you only if “Mail”).  jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 25
  • 26. Workers Over 50 Career Guide Returning to Work After Retirement 26 S o, you’ve retired. But, you need extra cash or you want a productive way to keep busy. Maybe you want to stay mentally active or just like working. Returning to work is certainly an alternative. What are some things you want to consider? Reviewing the pros and cons may help. What Do You Want to Do? When returning to work after retirement, don’t be afraid to dream or try something new. • Think about what you wanted to do when you were younger but never did. Still interested? • Complete some know-yourself exercises in a career book or on-line. Look at the newspaper want ads or Internet job search tools and jot down three jobs that intrigue you. • Research careers on UtahFutures.org • Visit your local Department of Workforce Services office to see what they can do to help you. • Take an interest inventory and match up your interests with different kinds of work. • Determine what skills you already have and think of how those skills can be applied in different settings. • Find the local chapter of a trade association for a business in which you might be interested. • Join a job-networking group. By CARRIE MAyNE ANd LECIA pARks LANGsTON, ECONOMIsTs • Join and network on LinkedIn (www.linkedin. com)—a business networking site. 26 February 2010
  • 27. Pros Cons Money: Employment will give you extra cash or de- Age discrimination: Unfortunately it still exists, and lay the time until you must tap your nest egg. that’s why it is imperative for older people to keep their work skills up-to-date. Health insurance: Your new employer might provide group health coverage. Pension problems: Returning to work after retiring could impact your pension. Check with your former Mental activity: You’ll have a chance to continue employer to make sure you won’t be hit with any your mental development, learn new things and penalties. contribute to society. Taxes on social security benefits: By working and Community: You’ll have the opportunity to be increasing your income, there’s a greater chance a around other people and feel like you are part of a larger percentage of benefits will be subject to in- community. come taxes. Social Security benefits: You could rack up bigger Less leisure time: You’ll have less free time if you monthly checks by staying on the job longer and work after retirement. raising your Social Security benefits. Workers age 65 or older can claim full benefits even if they con- IRA withdrawals: If you have a traditional IRA and tinue to work full-time. are working in retirement, you still will have to take required minimum distributions at 70 and a half. These withdrawals count as income, which could mean more of your Social Security benefits would be taxed. • Check out which jobs need workers in your area Although the recession may make it harder to find (jobs.utah.gov). a job, the economy will improve. Plus, as the baby boomer generation starts to retire, businesses will • List five or six places in your community where once again worry about the void they will create. you would like to work. The value of older workers is becoming more • Check out three or four franchise ideas for a appreciated. According to AARP, industries small business. that are actively recruiting older workers include • Check the AARP web site for companies who healthcare, retail and customer service, and like to hire seniors: (http://www.aarp.org/ education. money/work/best_employers/best_employers_ Finally, use all the resources outlined in this list_2009/). publication to find yourself the job you want.  • Throughout your career you’ve certainly built up a bank of valuable knowledge and skills. Resources: Consider putting that to good use by training •O*net self-assessment tools: http://online. the new generation in your field. onetcenter.org/skills/ • If it’s not money or benefits you’re after, consider •http://www.UtahFutures.org (under Assess Your volunteer work. Interests) jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 27
  • 28. Workers Over 50 Career Guide senior Community service 28 Employment program By CHARLOTTE kUHN, sENIOR EMpLOyMENT pROGRAM MANAGER, sALT LAkE COUNTy AGING sERvICEs B y making a difference, you can have Once you are deemed eligible for participation, a difference made in you. The Senior your provider will conduct assessments and Community Service Employment Program interviews with you to determine the direction (SCSEP) is one way to reach for what many your program should go. An Individualized think unreachable—independence, economic self- Employment Plan will be developed. You will sufficiency and increased opportunity. be placed in a host agency (a non-profit or government agency) to provide service while SCSEP is a program of the U.S. Department working on your individualized training plan. of Labor and is authorized through the Older You will work an average of 20 hours per week Americans Act. It grants income-eligible older and will earn the prevailing wage while you do so. Americans the opportunity to provide important Sometimes, you may be placed in school for a short and worthwhile community service while time if it is determined that a specific course or developing and enhancing job skills needed for the courses will benefit your individualized training. 21st century workforce. Thousands of older workers across our country participate in quality on-the-job While you are participating in this training, you training or classroom instruction, learning valuable are learning not only specific job skills, but you will transferable skills to give them the needed training be learning how to re-enter the job market, how to to compete and secure competitive employment. market yourself, and how to interview and land that At the same time, multitudes of non-profit or job. The SCSEP program is time-limited with the government agencies benefit from the services ultimate goal of placing you in an unsubsidized job. these older workers provide. You may rotate host agencies throughout your How does this program work? If you are age tenure to further upgrade and enhance your skills. 55 or older, unemployed and your income is Program participants are placed in a wide variety no more than 125% of the federal poverty rate of community service positions including day care (you must check to see if you qualify), have poor centers, senior centers, governmental agencies, employment prospects, and are legal to work in schools, hospitals, libraries, and landscaping the United States, you are eligible to participate in centers. this program. You can find out what organization provides the SCSEP program in your area by Other training may include: classroom, lectures, contacting your local Workforce Services office, seminars, individual instruction, and training your local area agency on aging, or by going to through other employment and training programs www.utahagingservices.org. or community colleges. 28 February 2010
  • 29. The SCSEP program is a bridge spanning what people will be served this year nationwide. Thou- many experience as an employment opportunity sands and thousands of these people will go on to chasm. By enhancing the services to our communi- gain their independence and economic self-suffi- ties while learning valuable job skills, over 90,000 ciency by securing higher paid unsubsidized jobs.  55 or older? Low income? You learned a new job then... You can again! Refresh your job skills! Re-enter the workforce! www.utahagingservices.org Age is an asset. Experience, a benefit. SCSEP Senior Community ServiCe employment program jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 29
  • 30. Workers Over 50 Career Guide By MICkIE dOUGLAs, sOCIAL sECURITy pUBLIC AFFAIRs spECIALIsT 30 More Gold in your Golden years A lthough the Gold Rush has been over of the monthly retirement benefit because you for more than a hundred years, people delayed getting benefits for 12 months; and today are still looking for ways to put at age 70, you would get 132 percent of the more gold into their “golden years.” Some of monthly benefit amount because you delayed the ways to find more gold don’t involve picks getting benefits for 48 months. or pans or prospecting luck. Did you know that if you work beyond your full retirement When you reach age 70, your monthly age before beginning to draw your Social benefit stops increasing, even if you continue Security benefits, the amount of your monthly to delay receiving benefits. Once you reach benefit check will increase? full retirement age, your income does not affect your Social Security benefits. So, in For example, if you were born between 1943 other words, there is no additional advantage and 1954, your full retirement age is 66. This to putting off benefits once you’ve reached means that if you start receiving benefits age 70. at age 66, you will get 100 percent of your monthly benefit. However, if you delay It is also important to remember that each receiving retirement benefits until after your additional year you work adds another year full retirement age, your monthly benefit of earnings to your Social Security record. continues to increase. For example, the yearly Higher lifetime earnings may mean higher rate of increase in Social Security retirement benefits when you retire. benefits for anyone born after 1943 is 8 If you are considering postponing retirement, percent. This 8 percent increase compares Social Security has a new online calculator favorably with current average interest called the Retirement Estimator that can earnings rates on traditional savings accounts. quickly give you an idea of how much Of course, the total benefit increase you would extra money you could expect by working receive would depend on the number of beyond your full retirement age. Just visit months you delay the start of your retirement Social Security’s web site at http://www. benefits: at age 67, you would get 108 percent socialsecurity.gov/estimator/.  30 February 2010
  • 31. Fact: • Disability among the older population is declining. Studies over the past two de- cades have revealed substantial declines in the rates of disability and functional limitation. If you work beyond your full retirement age before beginning to draw Social Security benefits, your monthly benefit check will increase. jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 31
  • 32. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 32 Funding Educational pursuits in the Midst of a Career Change Investing in an education is an investment in your future. By sCOTT BROWN, MANAGER OF COMMUNICATIONs, UTAH HIGHER EdUCATION AssIsTANCE AUTHORITy T he decision to enter higher education is Ask your employer: an exciting time. You are about to embark • Is tuition reimbursement offered? on a journey that can transform both your personal and work life forever. • What amount of reimbursement is offered per year, or per employee? Unlike traditional student populations, adults in transition have already established an occupational • Do courses taken need to be directly related to and financial identity (often with children), full- your job to be eligible for reimbursement? time work, and dependent parents in the mix. As a result, adults in transition have unique needs and • Do you need to be working full-time to opportunities when it comes to furthering their receive reimbursement benefits? educational pursuits. Grants, Scholarships, and Student Loans Tuition Reimbursement Complete the Free Application for Federal One consideration when seeking financial Student Aid (FAFSA) at http://www.fafsa. assistance is tuition reimbursement from your ed.gov/ (or visit your school’s financial aid employer. office) as early in the calendar year (preferably 32 February 2010
  • 33. Federally sponsored loan programs include the following: • Federal Perkins Loan Program provides February) as possible to determine eligibility for long-term, low-interest loans to grants, scholarships and student loans. Contact students with financial need attending the school’s financial aid office for information on any eligible postsecondary school. applying for assistance. Make sure you have your paperwork accurately completed and processed • Federal Family Education Loan on time. The staff in the school’s admissions and Program includes Federal Stafford financial aid office is there to help you, so contact Loans (subsidized and unsubsidized), them if you have questions or don’t understand a Federal PLUS Loans (for graduate form or the process. For more information contact and professional students, as well as the Utah Higher Education Assistance Authority parents), and Federal Consolidation at 1-877-336-7378. Loans. Grants are awarded to students who demonstrate • Federal Stafford unsubsidized loans financial need. You can get application forms from are not need-based and are available to the school’s financial aid office. In general, scholar- students at all income levels. ships and grants are gift aid. This is the best kind of aid because you don’t have to repay it. To obtain more information or to apply on these Check out all of the possible sources of scholar- programs, contact the financial aid office at the ships and grants in your local community and school you plan to attend. state, such as schools, colleges, religious and civic Consider researching and applying for assistant- organizations. When you apply for federal finan- ships, internships, or fellowships at the college to cial aid programs, your eligibility for federal grants gain experience related to your field of study while will be considered. getting paid. These are a great way to network with Scholarships often are awarded for merit in aca- colleagues within your field to line up a job after demics, athletics, or a particular field of study. you earn your degree. Scholarships also may be awarded based on ethnic Credit Standing and Private Loans background, religious affiliation, and special inter- Check your credit rating. The site ests. Learn more by visiting www.utahmentor.org. annualcreditreport.com allows you to download Loans are sources of financial aid that must be your credit report annually at no cost. It’s repaid. important to note that PLUS loans may be turned down to borrowers who have troubled credit. Government-sponsored educational loans (visit www.uheaa.org) have many advantages if Many lending companies offer loans designed you need to borrow to pay for your education. for adults in transition. They are called “private” They are better than traditional consumer loans or “alternative” loans and usually have higher because they usually offer lower interest rates and interest rates and repayment terms based on your extended repayment terms, require no collateral, credit rating. Borrow wisely and avoid debt when and help students and parents with the costs of possible, but remember the bottom line is: Investing education. in an education is an investment in your future.  jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 33
  • 34. Workers Over 50 Career Guide Navigating the Health 34 Insurance Jungle By MICHAEL HANNI ANd JOHN kRANTz, ECONOMIsTs H ealth insurance has a few things you might want become one of the to consider in your quest for most complicated coverage. issues facing Americans today. An unlikely source… going This is especially true for older back to work. Americans who must be extra careful in managing their Perhaps the simplest path to Resources health insurance. Not only are continuing health insurance— their health costs rising, but and the irony of this isn’t lost •AARP: http://www.aarp. on any of us—is to get a job. org/ their access to insurance can be tenuous—particularly if they are Employer-provided insurance is •Medicare: http://www. considering retiring before the often the easiest way to acquire medicare.gov/ age of 65. health care coverage. This is •Medicaid: http://health. especially true for individuals utah.gov/medicaid/ Why is retiring before the age who cannot obtain insurance on of 65 such a daunting leap of their own because of pre-existing •A Consumer’s Guide faith when it comes to health conditions. Maybe a part-time to Getting and Keep- insurance? Well, the easy part position that allows you to access ing Health Insurance in of the answer is that at age some kind of group plan is in Utah: http://www.health- 65, individuals are eligible for your future. insuranceinfo.net/state- insurance through the federally coverageguides/Utah- run Medicare program. However, Private insurance policies: not HealthInsuranceGuide. before that point the number of always an option. pdf insurance options available to Another possible route to bridge •Health Care Reform: potential retirees are relatively your post-retirement/pre-Medi- http://www.healthre- few and most are quite expensive. care years is to purchase individ- form.gov/ So, what can you do if you’re ual health insurance. While this younger than 65 and already option does allow for the most have retirement confetti in flexibility—given you can get your hair? Well, we don’t have the insurance company to issue all the answers, but here are you a policy—it can also be the 34 February 2010
  • 35. If you want to retire early, you need to beef up your pension or 401k and also line up some health insurance to cover you to age 65. most expensive. Because of that, it is important to limited you may qualify for primary care and some determine just how much per month you would be prescription coverage through Medicaid. If your able to spend on your health insurance. Likewise, it income is greater than the limits set by the pro- is critical to know exactly what the insurance will gram it may still be possible to receive Medicaid cover and what kind of co-payments you should benefits, given you meet all the other requirements expect. Also, does this policy cover prescription and you are deemed “medically needy.” drugs? That answer alone could make or break your decision. Facing the realities of our day and age. Needless to say, the picture for health insurance Continuing coverage with most recent employer. coverage for an early retiree can appear rather You may be able to continue your coverage with bleak. As the healthcare industry in our country your current employer—or union, religious orga- currently operates, individuals who are 50-plus, nization—after you retire. For example, some em- and aren’t working, face some serious barriers to ployers allow retirees to remain on the rolls of their coverage. While there are options available, if you group policy, but instead of subsidizing premiums are serious about retiring early you better start the retiree must cover the entire amount. planning not only for making your pension or Unfortunately, not all organizations offer this route, 401k beefy enough, but also lining up some health so to buy yourself some time, you may want to insurance that will carry you through to age 65. temporarily continue your coverage through the Health care reform. COBRA provisions of your current policy—ask At the time of this article’s writing, Congress was your HR or benefits officer for more information. still in the process of negotiating the details of a This allows you to continue your current policy, for health care reform bill. It is too early at this point up to 36 months, in some cases, if you meet some to say precisely what the bill may entail, assuming fairly easy requirements. it passes it all. However, several tentative proposals Last resort? Medicaid. currently under consideration specifically address You could also find yourself in a rather desper- early retire ate position where you can’t get private coverage, Under the proposed plan, the government would you’ve exhausted your COBRA coverage, and offer financial assistance to employers that provide can’t find work or are unable to work. What then? health insurance to early retirees. There is a last resort safety net—very last resort, mind you—and you may already know about it: For those early retirees without access to health insur- Medicaid. This often-heard-of though not-as-well- ance through their previous employers, a proposed understood program provides some medical ser- Health Insurance Exchange creates a marketplace vices to the most desperately in-need individuals in for selecting affordable insurance plans, which may society. If you are an early retiree (without children include a public option. While the ultimate content of at home) and find yourself without coverage and the bill is still uncertain, health care reform could pro- your income and asset levels have become severely vide more options for early retirees in the future.  jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 35
  • 36. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 36 your Rights Under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act By HEATHER MORRIsON, dIRECTOR, UTAH ANTIdIsCRIMINATION & LABOR dIvIsION A s an employee over the age of 40, you have • Posting job ads that encourage recent college rights that your younger co-workers do graduates to apply; and not have. Do you know what those rights are, and more importantly, how to protect them? • Demoting an older worker because he complained that his boss told him he was “too Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) old and slow” to do his job. The ADEA protects you from discrimination How to Protect Your Rights if you are 40 or over and work for an employer with 20 or more employees. This law promotes If you have been the victim of age discrimination, employment based on ability, not age. It prohibits you should file a Charge of Discrimination with an employer from using age as the basis for hiring, the Utah Antidiscrimination & Labor Division firing, training, benefits or other employment (“UALD”). The process is free and you do not decisions. need a lawyer. The ADEA also makes it illegal to harass an Requirements: employee because of his/her age, or to retaliate • Your employer must have at least 20 employees. against an employee who complains about age discrimination. • You must file your charge of employment discrimination within 180 days of the alleged Unfortunately, older employers can sometimes discriminatory act. If more than 180 but less face a variety of stereotypes. Some employers than 300 days have passed since the last date of assume older workers are not energetic enough, harm, your charge will be sent to the EEOC for or are unable to understand modern technology, processing. unwilling to adapt to new procedures or suffer from an overall decline in skills. Other examples How do I file a complaint? of age discrimination include: • Contact us by phone or in person at our offices • Calling an employee in her 60s “Granny” or to obtain the intake packet. Our contact infor- “Dinosaur”; mation is below. An intake specialist will help you fill out the forms and answer any questions • Telling an employee that it’s time he retires; you may have about the law or our process. 36 February 2010
  • 37. What Happens Next? At any point in the UALD process: • Within 10 days, both you and the employer • We can help you and the employer to settle the will receive a copy of the complaint by mail. A case at any time in the process. resolutions donference (a voluntary opportunity • You may withdraw your charge and request a to mediate and resolve your complaint) will also Right to Sue Notice so you can file in federal be scheduled. court. • If the mediation is unsuccessful, your case • Either party can obtain legal counsel or other will be assigned to an investigator who will representation at any time.  investigate your claims. After the evidence has been gathered, the Division will issue a finding of whether there is “reasonable cause” CONTACT UALd or “no reasonable cause” to believe that illegal discrimination has occurred. 160 East 300 South, 3rd Floor P O Box 146630 • If you do not agree with our decision, you Salt Lake City, UT 84114-6630 have several options. You may appeal it to an Phone: (801) 530-6801 Administrative Law Judge, or request a Right to Sue Notice and file a lawsuit in federal court. In-state Toll Free (800) 222-1238 You should talk to your investigator about these discrimination@utah.gov and other options you may have. jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 37
  • 38. Workers Over 50 Career Guide 38 UtahFutures.org A re you thinking of enter- access to more assessments and ing the workforce for allow you to save information. the first time in many It is helpful to take the assess- years? Are you tired of your job ments at the bottom left side of and believe you need a change? the page. You can take them and Have you lost your job and think just observe your results, or if you might want to do something you have created a portfolio, you different? Do you want to be in- can save the results. volved in the career development process with your child? There are different types of as- sessments. A good one to check If you answered “yes” to any out is the skills assessment. It of these questions, it would be will help you understand your worth your time to check out current skill set and how it UtahFutures.org. This system has might apply to other jobs. You information and activities that may be surprised to see that your can help you with all aspects of skills are transferable to many career and education develop- Plan and manage your ment including self-assessments, types of jobs you haven’t thought about in the past! career from grade school information about jobs in de- mand, how to write a resume, The section called Job Search to retirement!and how to apply for financial will assist you with finding a job. By kIMBERLEy BARTEL, assistance for school. You can find information from ECONOMIsT how to choose an occupation to Your first step would be to go to tips on interviewing to leaving the web site, www.utahfutures. your job gracefully. If you create org, and decide whether you an account, the system will help want to register and create an you create a resume that you can account or just visit. If you want save in your portfolio. to create an account, simply click on the Utah Citizen icon and The occupation information at follow the easy instructions. Cre- the top of the left hand side of ating an account will give you the page will give you informa- 38 February 2010
  • 39. More Facts Income and Poverty • In the national 65 and older age group, 89 percent reported tion about specific jobs such as Social Security income, 55 percent reported income from assets, Utah wages and outlook infor- 29 percent reported income from private pensions, 14 percent mation, information about the reported income from government-employee pensions, and 24 education and skills required, percent reported earnings (2005). licensing information, and much more. It will give you a pretty • In 2005, Social Security benefits accounted for 37 percent of the clear picture of what is required total income of the older population. for specific jobs. • In the United States, the 2008 median household income where The Employer Locator, on the the householder is 65 or older measures $33,800 compared lower right side, allows you to $52,000 for all households. search for employers across the U.S. that are most likely to hire • In the Utah, the 2008 median household income where the for specific occupations. It pro- householder is 65 or older measures $40,300 compared $56,600 vides the employer’s name, ad- for all households. dress, telephone number, and size. • Nationally, about 10 percent of the over-65 population were Another important section focus- below the poverty level in 2008 compared to 13 percent of the es on getting financial assistance total population. and scholarships. You can find lo- • In Utah, about 7 percent of the over-65 population were below cal and national information that the poverty level in 2008 compared to 10 percent of the total will help you figure out how to population. pay for any training or education you will need. • U.S. older women had a higher poverty rate (9 percent) than older men (5 percent) in 2008. If you are interested in assisting your child, you can access the • Utah women 65-and-over also showed higher poverty rates (6 portfolio he/she created at school. percent) than did comparably aged men (3 percent). Your child can take assessments, • Older persons living alone were much more likely to be poor (17 look at the Reality Check feature percent) than those living with families (6 percent). (how much will his/her desired lifestyle cost?), and investigate • The highest poverty rates were experienced among older different occupations with you. Hispanic women who lived alone (41 percent) and older black women who lived alone (38 percent). Utahfutures.org is there to help Utah citizens plan and manage • Households maintained by older people have net worth higher their careers from grade school to than that of all other households except for those maintained by retirement.  55-64 year-olds, who held similar levels. jobs.utah.gov/wi Workers Over 50 Career Guide 39
  • 40. and Visit jobs.utah.gov learn new skills. careers.utah.gov It’s never too late to Your experience and for more information expertise are a PLUS. Utah Department of Workforce Services Workforce Development and Information Division Presorted Standard 140 E. 300 S. US Postage PAID Salt Lake City, UT 84111 SLC, UT Permit # 4621