Authors: María José López Sánchez and José Antonio Belso Martinez, Universidad Miguel Hernández de Elche
Summary: Older people suffer discrimination in the labour market, in that their chances of finding employment if they lose their jobs are small, and the longer someone is out of the labour market, the harder it is to return. Although they often do possess the technical and transferrable skills required, these are not always recognised. Those who remain in work also encounter discrimination. They are unlikely to receive ongoing training and encouragement for career development, especially if their existing skills and qualifications are at a low level.
This paper is focusing on the Spanish situation, looking at the actions and methods in careers guidance for older workers. For this purpose 52 websites of Spanish trade unions were visited during 2010. Using the main findings of 131 questionnaires from 48 employers’ organisations, 41 trade unions and 28 public employment services from across the country, we look at guidance from a macro and micro perspective: how guidance is provided and who the main beneficiaries are.
We conclude that in the Spanish labour context, there is a specific need to improve the coordination and effective publicity regarding existing guidance services and their accessibility. Evidence shows that those who make least use of the careers guidance services are the older workers aged 50 to 55 years, and no special attention is given to meeting their needs.
Keywords: Old workers, careers guidance, active labour market policies, social partners, Spain
This article is part of AJAL, Volume 54_2. The entire volume is available in .pdf for purchase here.