Older workers - 'golden goose' of the economy

Research shows that older workers bring to the table distinct advantages, including greater firm-specific knowledge and domain expertise, as well as lower turnover rates.
Research shows that older workers bring to the table distinct advantages, including greater firm-specific knowledge and domain expertise, as well as lower turnover rates. PHOTO: ST FILE

Ms Deon Soh XuanHui made many astute points about the economic relevance of older workers (Recognise older workers' ability to contribute, April 12).

Hired shortly after Caesars' casino owners filed for bankruptcy protection in 2015, chief executive of Caesars Entertainment Mark Frissora spent the critical first 100 days visiting the casinos to engage the employees for suggestions to resurrect the business.

He was especially adamant about not getting rid of people who run operations because these experienced workers, often older people who have worked there for years, are the "golden goose" - the repositories with intimate knowledge of the business and their revenue drivers, customers.

Indeed, with human capital as Singapore's main resource, it is a case of "all hands on deck" - older workers are our knowledge repositories who have a role to play in the economy too.

Moreover, research shows that older workers bring to the table distinct advantages, including greater firm-specific knowledge and domain expertise, as well as lower turnover rates.

They contribute to the diversity of age in the workplace, which beneficially impacts and generates very positive outcomes for firms.

It would indeed be myopic to deprive ourselves of opportunities to tap the knowledge and experience of older workers as a result of stereotyping and age-bias.

Woon Wee Min

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 17, 2019, with the headline 'Older workers - 'golden goose' of the economy'. Print Edition | Subscribe