How to Tell If Your Workplace Is Inclusive to All Ages
During the 15-year period from 2000 to 2015, age discrimination issues accounted for between 20 and 25 percent of all Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) cases. Age discrimination cases typically receive the highest payouts: $93.9 million in the year 2013 alone.
Clearly, ageism is bad for business. It’s also illegal. Moreover, maintaining fairness and tackling any form of discrimination helps you to attract and retain top talent, and boost your corporate and employer image. Last but not least – and the simplest and strongest point of all – it’s the right thing to do.
Action Steps to Take
As you maintain a workplace that’s inclusive to all ages, your challenge is to build a culture where every employee feels respected and valued. This means acknowledging the unique perspectives and experiences that each individual brings to the table.
- Understand the issue. Consider all aspects of how you employ people to ensure freedom from age discrimination. Carefully assess your staff across the board, from directors and managers to the shop floor, for any signs of age-related harassment or victimization.
- Have a policy. It should include definitions of age discrimination, as well as reporting and grievance procedures. Make sure your policy expresses your commitment to a supportive work environment for employees of all ages. Communicate it clearly and consistently.
- Start with your hiring process. Remove any discriminatory language from your postings. Steer clear of age-related interview questions. And avoid stereotyping older workers; for instance, assuming that someone 60 years old will retire soon and thus isn’t worth hiring.
- Provide training to prevent age discrimination. Require participation for all employees. Ensure that everyone has no doubt about what to do if they either witness or are subjected to age-related discrimination or harassment. Emphasize and encourage individual responsibility.
- Rethink promotions. Opportunities for promotion, job-related training or other opportunities should be available to everyone, regardless of age. The only exception is legally qualified reasons for age criteria.
- Encourage mentoring. A great way to keep your workplace inclusive to all ages is to implement a multigenerational mentoring program. Employees of any age can pass on their experience, upwards and downwards, and help others develop through their unique knowledge and skills.
- Provide robust complaint processing and proactive prevention. Make prevention your goal. From top management down, every employee should understand the importance of open, one-on-one communication. This means realizing that including and engaging co-workers of all ages translates into a more cohesive, productive work environment.
Work with the experts at Frontline Source Group!
As you grow, manage and maintain your industry-leading workforce, call on the experts at Frontline Source Group to help you embrace a multi-generational culture and avoid discrimination of any kind. Looking for a staffing agency in Austin, TX? Contact us today to learn more. To find the branch closest to you, click here.