Ageing and Employment Policies: France 2014

Working Better with Age

image of Ageing and Employment Policies: France 2014

People today are living longer than ever before, while birth rates are dropping in the majority of OECD countries. In such demographics, public social expenditures require to be adequate and sustainable in the long term. Older workers play a crucial role in the labour market. Now that legal retirement ages are rising, older workers will work longer and employers will have to retain them. But those older workers who have lost their job have experienced long term-unemployment and low probabilities to return to work. What can countries do to help? How can they give older people better work incentives and opportunities? How can they promote age diversity in firms? This report offers analysis and assessment on what the best policies are for fostering employability, job mobility and labour demand at an older age in France.

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Removing obstacles to the hiring and retention of older workers in France

The success of reforms intended to stimulate employment for older workers will require an increase in the demand for their labour, without which they will find themselves unemployed. The reluctance of employers to hire or retain older workers reflects in part their negative perception of the adaptability and the productivity of older workers, with perhaps a touch of age discrimination. There are also other, more objective factors that employers mention as motivating their behaviour. These may include, for example, the cost of labour, which rises sharply with age, and strict employment protection rules. All these factors will have to be taken into account in order to encourage employers to offer more possibilities to older workers.

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