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3 Ways Job Seekers Can Overcome Age Discrimination
Monday, October 22, 2012

Age is no doubt the hardest discriminating factor to mask. Even though employers are prohibited to discriminate against candidates based on their ages, the sad truth is that it's hard to tell whether or not they are.

Older job workers from the the Baby Boom generation have it toughest, according to research conducted by Beyond.com and Millenial Branding. The study showed that Boomers spend the most time look for work compared to Gen X or Gen Y job seekers.

More specifically, 25 percent of Boomers have been looking for more than a year whereas 17 percent of Gen X and 10 percent of Gen Y have been out of work for the same amount of time. On top of that, 65 percent of Boomers believe that they've been denied opportunities due to their ages.

One problem is that companies may want new blood or those more relevant with the current generation. Older workers tend to cost more for companies in terms of benefits and salaries. That being the case, employers may take on younger candidates still new in their careers who are more flexible with their compensation.

Despite these adverse circumstances, Boomers and other job seekers who feel that their ages work against them can take measures like these to counter age discrimination:

1) Keep all signs of age off your resume.

Since chronocling your employement experience is required on your resume, the time frames listed can give the hiring manager an idea of how long you've been working, thus your age range. To avoid this, remove work experience that you had before the current decade. Of course, you should also omit any graduation dates. On your LinkedIn profile, don't include any photos of yourself that may make  you appear older.

2) Update your skills and resume wording.

Keeping your resume current goes for every and any job seeker. Updating  your resume is like updating your status on a social media profile. Show employers that you are a creature of adaptation; that you can change with your environment rather than succumb to extinction. Learn the latest technological skills, such as new programming language or design applications, to help you stay just as relevant as younger seekers.

3) Become an expert at networking.

Older job seekers have a more expansive network than those of younger generations. This is a major advantage that they have over the competition. Boomers will know whom and where to look to when applying for jobs. LinkedIn is very useful tool for job-seeking professionals, and the study found that more boomers are doing their searches online in comparison to younger generations. Landing a job is often a result of who you know, therefore, you want to form relationships with all past, present,a nd potential colleauges.

Tapping into all your resoures no doubts gives you a higher chance of landing an interview and subsequentially, a job. It's important that older job seekers know that where they have disadvantages in some areas when it comes to younger competition, they still have advantages in others.