Release type: Media Release

Date:

SA Business Urged to Lead the Nation on Mature Age Employment

Ministers:

The Hon Kate Ellis MP
Minister for Employment Participation
Minister for Early Childhood and Child Care

South Australian businesses are being encouraged to hire more older workers, with Business SA and the Australian Chamber of Commerce today putting the business case for employing more mature age workers. 

Minister for Employment Participation, Kate Ellis launched Employ Outside the Box—the rewards of a diverse workforce and The Business Case for Recruiting and Retaining Mature-Age Workers, the first in a series of guides to help employers tap into the talent and experiences of mature-age Australians. 

“No other mainland state has an older population, and with 5,500 people over the age of 55 looking for work, South Australian employers have to lead the way on mature age employment,” Ms Ellis said. 

“Across Australia there are about two million older Australians who want a job, but too many employers are missing the opportunities that employing these Australians offer. 

“In a time when some sectors are crying out for workers, it makes great sense for employers to look again at what older Australians can offer their business. 

“Every Australian will grow old and every Australian deserves their experience and talents to be recognised. Besides the benefits to business of thinking and employing outside the box, it’s important that more Australians can benefit from the dignity that comes with work. 

“I congratulate the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Business SA on driving the cultural change we have to see in our work places over the coming years, and I urge every employer in South Australia to join them,” Ms Ellis said. 

Employ outside the Box—the rewards of a diverse workforce helps businesses develop innovative strategies to attract and retain a diverse workforce while The Business Case for Recruiting and Retaining Mature-Age Workers is the first of the Employers Guides, which specifically examines the benefits and practical steps involved in hiring older workers. 

Ms Ellis said the work of ACCI and Business SA complements the Australian Government’s commitment to supporting mature-age job seekers including: 

  • providing incentives of $1,000 to 10,000 employers who recruit a mature-age job seeker over 50 years old from 1 July 2012; 
  • providing mature-age job seekers with support and assistance, including IT training, counselling, paid work-placements and peer-based job preparation from 1 January 2013 under the $25.8 million Mature-Age Participation—Job Seeker Assistance Program; 
  • Helping more Australian businesses become best-practice employers of mature-age people by providing an extra $15.6 million for the Corporate Champions program; and 
  • Helping more mature-age job seekers with career advice by extending the Experience+ Career Advice service to 30 June 2016.