Academic journal article Journal of Employment Counseling

An Unofficial Guide to Online Resources for Working with Older Workers

Academic journal article Journal of Employment Counseling

An Unofficial Guide to Online Resources for Working with Older Workers

Article excerpt

This article contains an annotated bibliography of 28 quality online resources of use to counselors serving the older working population. The bibliography is divided into 2 sections. The 1st section contains 16 resources specifically related to older workers. The following section contains 12 resources providing information and services useful to older workers.

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If one counsels, coaches, recruits, or places employees, one is no doubt aware of a workplace demographic shift referred to as "the rise of gray labor" (Hirsch, 2003; Purcell, 2000); this phrase is commonly used to refer to an ongoing increase in the number of older workers in the U.S. labor force. Some projections estimate that nearly 1 in 3 working-age Americans will be at least 55 in 2010 (Rix, 2002, p. 25). Although not plentiful at this time, there are a substantial number of resources on the World Wide Web that can be of use to individuals servicing older workers and their employing organizations.

The purpose of this guide is to direct individuals working with older adults to some of the quality resources on the Web pertaining to the older worker population. The resources have been divided into two groups. The first group contains resources specifically and exclusively related to older workers. The second group contains resources that are not specifically targeted at older workers but that do provide information and services useful to this demographic group.

RESOURCES SPECIFICALLY RELATED TO OLDER WORKERS

The following organizations provide valuable online information that addresses the specific needs, interests, and concerns of the older worker/adult. Some of the resources are aimed at various older worker subgroups such as African Americans, American Indians, baby boomers, and Asians. Services of the organizations are wide-ranging and include the following: suggested employment opportunities, career planning assistance, job placement services, techniques for searching for employment, an assortment of retirement activities, networking opportunities, and a variety of training programs.

AARP

AARP (www.aarp.org) provides general information useful to older workers, including suggested employment opportunities, retirement activities, job placement services, and suggested techniques for searching for employment. Recommended sites provided by AARP pertaining to older workers include AARP Worker Options (www.aarp.org/working_options), which provides information for career development among older workers, resume writing, and financial advice, and the AARP Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP; www.aarp.org/scsep), which is a joint training effort of the AARP and the U.S. Department of Labor to assist the development of low-income older workers. AARP also provides the AARP Small Business Center (www.aarpsmallbiz.com) to assist older persons interested in starting their own business.

BoomerCareer.com

BoomerCareer.com (www.boomercareer.com) is the Web site of a well-known career publication that targets working professionals of the baby boom (1946-1964) generation. BoomerCareer.com provides a variety of informative articles on issues revolving around the career development of the baby boomer population as well as free resume posting and a job search engine.

Experience Works

Experience Works (www.experienceworks.org), previously known as Green Thumb, is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to training and providing employment services for older workers. Programs offered by Experience Works are designed to provide older workers with training and knowledge to continue in personalized career paths. Experience Works also provides an associated service, Geezer.com (www.geezer.com), that allows older artisans to develop and market their crafts over the World Wide Web. The organization is community focused, as represented by their participation in the SCSEP, which is a nationally funded program under Title V of the Older Americans Act. …

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