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Account of current working scenario

Discuss about the Training Older Workers for Lifelong Endeavour.

Reading Ng and Law (2014), it has been known that learning and developing skills is no longer limited to classrooms or is oriented to job sessions, but learning is a lifelong endeavour. The report shall discuss the contemporary requirements to educate the people in a particular area of work. The aim of the paper is to understand the necessity and requirement for training and teaching the existing and older workers in a workplace. Primarily, evaluation of the complete scenario of the particular workplace will be done and based on the findings, certain recommendations will be made that shall help to improve the working condition of the particular work place. In order to support the argument, the Staffing Delegations: Administrative Divisions of the Griffith University has been selected for the case study.

I have some experience as an HR consultant and I look forward to this occupation as my career. I have understood the importance of recruiting people in an organization. As stated by Lechner (2012), there have been considerable changes in the complete process of recruitment. With the advent of technology and better means of communication, the recruitment process has changed largely. In previous times, hiring notices used to serve by the means of advertisements in the newspaper or magazines, but now the complete scenario has changed. There are numerous websites and other media where different types of jobs are posted from where the prospected people can get a note of their area of work and get recruited. These things are evident and it is for the same reason, it is important to teach the older workers at the work place because they might not be able to cope with the recent situations.

For example, the Staffing Delegations of the Griffith University are associated with the recruitment and selection policy of the staffs in the University. Persons at the higher authority include Senior Deputy Vice Chancellors in academic and engagement services, Vice Presidents in Corporate Services and in the Global front. People are recruited in their respective positions depending on their skills and ability to perform their respective roles. In the same accordance, it can be said that these people are older people and thus, at times the necessity of training them and guiding them in the right direction becomes necessary.

If the recruitment process of the Staffing Delegation: Administrative Department of the Griffith University is considered, it is divided into some major phases. These include:

Requirement of changes in the recruitment process

Pre-recruitment: In this phase, the manager conducts a review of the current position of the business needs and the budget implication as well. In collaboration with the HR Advisor Business Partners, a position is prepared based on the skills, knowledge, experience and the behaviour as well (Taylor, 2013). Another important aspect of the selection procedure of the pre-recruitment process is the method of advertising for the purpose of recruitment. In such cases, framing well based strategies are important.

Recruitment: In this stage, the role of the selection panel holds the most importance. Developing a potential recruitment process and developing a project approach for recruiting the best candidate is the prime responsibility of the people belonging to this department (Thrasher et al., 2016).

Selection: This happens to be the most challenging phase of recruitment where the main task is to short list the candidates, keeping a track of the complete vacancy process is indeed an important part of the complete recruitment procedure (Taylor, 2013).

Post-selection: In this phase, the recruited persons are given an offer of payment. On the basis of some negotiation, a clear understanding is made and the person is recruited.

The complete selection process might be a regular process for the complete Staffing and Delegation Department of the University but it has to be understood that the complete recruitment process has changed a lot. In the view point of Cole and Cole, (2016), there are countless innovations and technological developments in the recent working scenario. These changes are important to implement in the operation of workplace.

The Beckerian Human Capital Theory provides an economic framework to understand the importance of investing for the training of older workers. It has been observed that there is a great possibility of getting proper return from the complete procedure of the training process in the older people participate with good effort, shall bring better prosperity to the organization. Again, the Human Capital theory also predicts that it is only when the discounted cost is more than the actual payment received by the employee, the person find it beneficial to participate in the training process. If the training of the older people is considered, they rather find themselves well experienced and do not entertain the training procedure. Therefore, training the older workers is considered profitable only when the older workers’ perspective towards the complete training process is positive.

Change in the demographic shifts has created challenges for society and society policies. One of the major challenges that the workplace is facing in the recent situation is the increasing number of older workers in the workplace. Other changes in terms of health, economic, social and legislative sections are also contributing towards the changes over the forthcoming decades. In fact, in the view point of Bal and Jansen, (2015), the implications are likely to be wide ranging. With the increase in the age of a person, the ability to combine with the uncertainty of the impact of the changes in the workplace is lost. It then becomes important to come up with certain instances to teach the employers about the particular work. In addition to this, it has been pointed that with the increasing workforce age diversity in the workplace, the situation might give rise to concerns regarding the generational gap and other forms of conflicts as well. If proper checks are kept towards the teaching procedure of the older workforce, it can be said that it can bring benefits in the general business terms like employee motivation, flexibility and even retention of the experienced employees.

Implications for maintaining and developing professional learning practice of older workers

Among the numerous issues, some of the vital issues include, performance gaps, impact of new technology. These are two issues that might prove to be challenging to the older workers in an organization. Therefore, in order to make the work effective enough, it is important to teach the older workers with proper vocational training. If the workers are not trained properly, there will remain a performance gap among the various employees that will ultimately affect the function and operation of the organization. For the sake of change, it is required to teach the old workers and train them properly so that they will be able to compensate the requirement as required to achieve the organizational goals and objectives. In addition to this, Gonyea, (2013) has pointed out that educating older workers is also crucial to maintain the economic vitality that might appear to be coming in recent decades. Teaching the older workers is one of the ways to fight against the increasing competition in the market and the industry. It is only on the basis of applying knowledge one will be able to fight the intense competition in the market and increase the viability of performance of the particular individual. However, empirical researches have also showed that in an organization in Germany, there has been no such increase in the productivity of the organization by training the older employees (Hirshleifer et al., 2015).

Ng and Feldman, (2012) has also pointed out that there are various reason that clearly signifies that older workers cannot be neglected and that the complete organizational activities have to be carried on by keeping the perspective of the organization in mind. Ng and Feldman, (2012) have revealed that older workers are social security. They contribute the most in an organization when it comes to experience. They have the ability to fight against any odds that might arise at any point of time in the business of an organization. However, as argued by Schmitz (2015), that in the recent perspective, there is no doubt that the recent working scenario is different than that used to be at some time earlier. Therefore, it is evident enough to teach the older workers to balance the working procedure in the particular organization.

As stated by Van Dalen, Henkens and Wang, M. (2015), there is an importance of continuous learning in the workplace. The new innovative and technological developments that are implemented in the workplace are important to make the operation of the business more effective. Some relevant reasons for the implication of maintaining and developing professional practice especially for the older people can be stated here:

To lead from the top: For the people at the higher authority like the managers, it becomes important to maintain the productivity and the performance of the work that they are responsible for. It is the responsibility of the manager to create a culture of learning and address any kind of action that takes place in the workplace (Bal & Jansen, 2015).

To create a safe environment: Another important aspect of teaching and continuous learning in the workplace is to maintain a safe environment that aims at reducing the risk that can take place at any point of time.

To improve the performance of the existence employees: When necessary trainings are given to the existing groups of employees, it is expected that their weaknesses are addressed. A training program that is conducted strengthens their skills and help to improve the skills that are needed for an employee to work at a higher level (Ryan, King & Finkelstein, 2015).

Training provides the necessary knowledge and overall creates a knowledgeable group of staffs that helps in overtaking the responsibility of others whenever necessity arises. In contrast to these approaches, Shiu, Hassan and Parry, (2015) said that with the increased workforce age brings certain barriers in the work culture as well. One of the most impactful issues is the increase in the age of an individual that results in the reduction of the flexibility of their work. A structured and proper development program ensures a consistent experience and background knowledge.

If the case of the Staffing Delegations in the Griffith University is taken into consideration, it has to be understood that majority of the staffs of the department are experienced and belongs to the older groups of people. The question that arises here is the ability of the person in operation to tackle the situation of employment. In this respect, it can be said that the teaching techniques have changed a lot (Ryan, King & Finkelstein, 2015). Education system is no longer depended on the boundary of books and other academic sources but the way of teaching has changed (Ian, 2005). It is for the same reason has become important for the recruiters as well to understand the changing nature of the teaching procedure that the recruited people could be eligible enough to perform in the changed scenario of teaching and learning due to the advent of technology and other factors. If the case of the older workers is consider, it has to be said that the ideology of the workers or employees who have been working for an organization for a long time varies with those who are new to the particular organization. In order to come down to a particular ideology, it is required to teach the older workers accordingly to support the activities of the particular organization (Omerzel & Širca, 2008). It has been observed that the older workers are effective enough to increase the productivity of the organization and thus, they hold importance in the functionality of the particular working sphere.

Vocational education is the kind of education that prepares people to work and support their roles in various professions including nursing, medicine, architecture or law. Providing a formal training referred to a structured period of learning with proper evaluation of assessment that that enables the employees to earn credit towards a recognized award and qualification. It has been observed that a lifelong learning has a lot of benefits for an individual and for the organization as well. Participation in the learning experience shows a positive impact on life satisfaction. In addition to this, it has also been reported that continuous learning also helps in building confidence among the employees. Learning might also help to improve the sense of self efficacy and help to develop proper skills and knowledge about their life.

In the view point of Regmi, (2015), participation of the older people increases in the learning activities when the learning is conducted by the means of cultural activities. If the situation of the Staffing Delegation of the University is considered, the recruitment process is still carried out by older group of people. As pointed out by Lauzon, (2013), an organization might have the support of the best technology and physical resources, but in case if the people in the organization are not efficient enough to tackle the various operations of the business, the particular organization has to suffer ultimately. Poor selection of employees in the recruitment process definitely affects the organization’s working procedure and it is for the same reason, the responsibility of the recruiters’ increases by many folds (Ahl, 2006). It has to be understood that the Griffith University is a well known and renowned University of the country and the teachers and professors who are a part of this University should be recruited properly that the enrolled students get the best of the education.

In case, if the recruiters are taught properly for their role, then the chances of better recruitment increases and the work of the particular organization gets better. It has to be understood that by not approaching for a decision to eliminate the older people from an organization, it is better to teach them and train them in a way that shall help them to cope with the situation of the organization (Barbara, Crossouard, & Aynsley, 2010). If proper investments are made and the older workers are directed in a right way, there is a great possibility of the improvement of the complete working scenario that will ultimately results in the betterment of the working of the organization.

To teach the older workers, it is recommended that the individuals will be guided on certain basis and trainings will be given to them with proper approach to deal with the situation. The older people shall be requested to attend the training session where they will be given proper training and will be taught the necessary things to improve the condition of the working place (Dunne, Goddard & Woolhouse, 2008). The older workers have to be treated well and they must not be treated on the ground that they are inefficient to perform their roles as recruiters. The importance of teaching and continuous learning has to be told to them. The vocational training might include the following process:

Cognitive training: It has been observed that due to decline in the cognitive function, the ability of the older workers declined to certain extent. In addition to this, the older workers also find it challenging to relate themselves with the younger workers due to their cognitive ability that comes automatically with age. As pointed out by Tsan and Man (2013), there are evidences that show the difference in the learning method of the older workers.

Training by lecture, modelling and active participation: The ability of the older workers can be improved by the means of different kinds of training activities by the means of proper lecture or training that shall match the pace of learning of the older workers.  

Teaching by active participation: In the view point of Garf (2013), older workers can be taught most effectively only when they are given the provision for active participation. As mentioned earlier that with the advent of technology and other means of education system, the demand of the recruitment process has also changed. Therefore, it is required to make the older people aware of the entire situation of the working procedure by training them properly. If required, the older people shall be showed the complete procedure of learning that they will be able to understand the actual requirement and hence recruit accordingly.

Conclusion:   

The discussion made on the importance and implication of the older workers in a particular work place has helped to understand the importance of training and teaching the already existing workers who have been working in an organization for a long time. It has been understood that in case of older workers, there remained a gap in the work practice than that of the people who are not as old as others. In this respect, it has been observed that there are numerous benefits of old workers in a particular work place. It is with the help of the experience that the older workers have the function and the operation of the work place might improve. On the other hand, it has to be understood that these old workers at some time are not effective enough to meet the necessary requirements that are indeed necessary to meet in the contemporary time. Therefore, it falls under the responsibility of the particular organization to think of certain actions that shall help the older workers to cope with the situation and be equally participative in the functionality of the work place.

It has been observed that without the implication of the internet and other virtual sources, teaching and learning processes cannot be possible in the recent time. For the older work force, knowing the complete procedure of teaching becomes important. These groups of people can only be taught if they are given proper training about the requirement of the teaching procedure. Therefore, it is important for the management of a University to understand the importance of teaching the existing employees in the particular department of the University. It is only when the staff delegations understand the importance the new teaching technique, they shall be able to recruit the right person for the post of the teaching and other criteria in the University.

Reference list:

Ahl. H, (2006) Motivation in adult education: a problem solver or a euphemism for direction and control?. International Journal of Lifelong Education 25:4, pages 385-405. 

Bal, P. M., & Jansen, P. G. (2015). Idiosyncratic deals for older workers: Increased heterogeneity among older workers enhance the need for I-deals. In Aging workers and the employee-employer relationship (pp. 129-144). Springer International Publishing.

Barbara M. Crossouard G. & Aynsley S. (2010) Vocational lifelong learners?. International Journal of Lifelong Education 29:6, pages 679-692. 

Cole, G., & Cole, G. (2016). Extending the careers of older workers: the role of individual working agreements. Human Resource Management International Digest, 24(6), 24-26.

Cornford. I. R. (2009) Mere platitudes or realistically achievable? An evaluation of current lifelong learning policy in Australia. International Journal of Lifelong Education 28:1, pages 19-40. 

Dunne L., Goddard G. & Woolhouse. C. (2008) Mapping the changes: a critical exploration into the career trajectories of teaching assistants who undertake a foundation degree. Journal of Vocational Education & Training 60:1, pages 49-59. 

Gkiontsi, D., & Karanika-Murray, M. (2016). Dealing with economic and demographic challenges: Workplace innovation practices as a timely and effective response to older workers' needs. European Journal of Workplace Innovation, 2(1).

Gonyea, J. G. (2013). The older worker and the changing labor market: new challenges for the workplace. Routledge.

Graf, L. (2013). The hybridization of vocational training and higher education in Austria, Germany, and Switzerland (p. 302). Budrich UniPress.

Griffith.edu.au (2016), Griffith University, Available from:  https://www.griffith.edu.au/ [Accessed on 30-10-2016]

Hirshleifer, S., McKenzie, D., Almeida, R., & Ridao?Cano, C. (2015). The impact of vocational training for the unemployed: experimental evidence from Turkey. The Economic Journal.

Ian Cornford. (2005) Challenging current policies and policy makers' thinking on generic skills. Journal of Vocational Education & Training 57:1, pages 25-45. 

 Lauzon. A. C. (2013) Youth and lifelong education: after-school programmes as a vital component of lifelong education infrastructure. International Journal of Lifelong Education 32:6, pages 757-779. 

Lechner, M. (2012). Training the East German labour force: microeconometric evaluations of continuous vocational training after unification. Springer Science & Business Media.

Lee M. & Friedrich T. (2011) Continuously reaffirmed, subtly accommodated, obviously missing and fallaciously critiqued: ideologies in UNESCO's lifelong learning policy. International Journal of Lifelong Education 30:2, pages 151-169. 

Ng, E. S., & Law, A. (2014). Keeping up! Older workers’ adaptation in the workplace after age 55. Canadian Journal on Aging/La revue canadienne du vieillissement, 33(01), 1-14.

Ng, T. W., & Feldman, D. C. (2012). Evaluating six common stereotypes about older workers with meta?analytical data. Personnel Psychology, 65(4), 821-858.

Omerzel. D. G. & Širca. N. T,  (2008) The Validation of Different Kinds of Knowledge at the Higher Education Level. Higher Education in Europe 33:4, pages 423-436. 

Regmi. K. D. (2015) Can lifelong learning be the post-2015 agenda for the Least Developed Countries?. International Journal of Lifelong Education 34:5, pages 551-568. 

Ryan, K. M., King, E. B., & Finkelstein, L. M. (2015). Younger workers' metastereotypes, workplace mood, attitudes, and behaviors. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 30(1), 54.

Schmitz, J. (2015). Companies and Older Workers: Obstacles and Drivers of Labour Market Participation in Recruitment and at the Workplace. In Paid Work Beyond Pension Age (pp. 217-236). Palgrave Macmillan UK.

Shiu, E., Hassan, L. M., & Parry, S. (2015). The moderating effects of national age stereotyping on the relationships between job satisfaction and its determinants: A study of older workers across 26 countries. British Journal of Management, 26(2), 255-272.

Taylor, P. (Ed.). (2013). Older workers in an ageing society: critical topics in research and policy. Edward Elgar Publishing.

Thrasher, G. R., Zabel, K., Wynne, K., & Baltes, B. B. (2016). The importance of workplace motives in understanding work–family issues for older workers. Work, Aging and Retirement, 2(1), 1-11.

Tsang, M. M., & Man, D. W. (2013). A virtual reality-based vocational training system (VRVTS) for people with schizophrenia in vocational rehabilitation. Schizophrenia research, 144(1), 51-62.

Van Dalen, H. P., Henkens, K., & Wang, M. (2015). Recharging or retiring older workers? Uncovering the age-based strategies of European employers. The Gerontologist, 55(5), 814-824.

Van Solinge, H., & Henkens, K. (2014). Work-related factors as predictors in the retirement decision-making process of older workers in the Netherlands. Ageing and Society, 34(9), 1551-1574.

Volles N. (2016) Lifelong learning in the EU: changing conceptualisations, actors, and policies. Studies in Higher Education 41:2, pages 343-363. 

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