Complaints about the lack of qualified, available skilled mining industry workers are being heard now. What is a company to do if it cannot wait four to six years to hire a new graduate? The first step might be to visit www.Prime50.com, a web-based job board with the dual goals of helping older Canadians find employment and of raising awareness among employers about the value of recruiting, rehiring and retaining experienced workers in their fifties and older.
The website is the brainchild of Barry Witkin, a retired Toronto chartered accountant. He recognized the rapidly-developing trend in Canada, the United States and abroad towards employment of people over 50. Companies are increasingly interested in enlisting the skills, experience and work ethic of aging baby-boomers who want to remain productive, he says. His plans call for creating at least fifty Prime50 Centres across Canada in the next few months, with general managers already enlisted to operate eight locations in Ontario, as well as Western and Atlantic Canada. And the list is growing every week, he adds.
Before launching Prime50 last October, Witkin interviewed hundreds of employed and unemployed people over 50, as well as employers, career counsellors, human resources professionals, recruiters, politicians and economists. “All were aware of the huge demographic shift taking place due to the declining birthrate and aging of the baby-boom generation,” he says. “It was obvious that there were no services that specialized in providing employment opportunities and career services for the 50-plus age group.”
Prime50, in addition to its interactive website and job board, today launched its monthly PRIME50 INSIGHT NEWS JOURNAL, which carries articles and columns on trends and developments on the 50+ labour market, along with company profiles, job-search advice and other features. The monthly News Journal is available to subscribers, including job seekers and employers, through the Prime50 website.