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The Skills Shortage Is Forcing Organizations To Change The Way They Utilize The Skills Of Their Older Workforce. Do You Agree Or Disagree With This Statement

1403 words - 6 pages

The turbulent business environment in which more organizations operate means that not only is change becoming more frequent, but that the nature of change may be increasingly complex, and it is often more extensive. While Australia is enjoying its longest employment growth period in recent history, it's also undergoing a skills shortage crisis stretching from skilled laborers to highly trained accountants. Businesses across the country are forced to respond to the skills shortage in a variety of ways; a number of strategies and processes can be implemented to attract and retain skilled employees locally with some companies making efforts to retrain older workers, and to improve their level of skills.Demographic changes in the socio-cultural environment have had significant impact on the Australian society. Organizations will have to make incremental adjustments or modular transformation to respond to the changing environment. Skills shortages occur for a variety of reasons including; a strong economy with low rates of unemployment, growth of new industries with few ready-skilled tradespeople available, reduced interest in particular industries among potential job seekers, technology changes within an industry and so on (Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations, 2008).The Federal Government has given an extra sway in bringing desirable skilled migrants to their area and widen the pool of sought-after occupations to fill growing skills shortages. The mass intake with fast-track training, language barriers and the low level of skills of these migrants have caused Australian businesses to produce poor service and products (Guildford, 2007).Furthermore, Summers (2005) in her article has stated that "the need to save the nation the cost of pensions, health care and social security has created a 'requirement' for people to remain economically active for as long as bodies permit".For these reasons, older Australians are expected to keep working to alleviate the economic burden on the young in coming years. Human Resources and line managers in organizations have been asked to discourage older members from retiring and work with these staff members on how best to use their skills, deferring retirement where necessary (Leape, 2006).Increasing workforce participation by older workers is a key plank in the Government's strategy to combat skills shortages. Generally mature age workers are seen as reliable, stable and prepared to stay in the job for several years, as well as bring a wealth of knowledge and a lifetime of experience with them to an organization.The proportion of the population aged 50 years and over is projected to increase from 29 percent in 2002 to between 46 and 50 percent in 2051 (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2007). These demographic changes will have a significant impact on the level of workforce participation and will continue to affect the skills shortages currently being experienced by the Australian workforce.As a...

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