Difficulties in Recruitment of Carers for Elderly People

Recruitment is said to be a life changing experience. Some may end up getting the best opportunities in their life while some suffer misery. In an interview not only the applicant is put through test, but also the interviewer is tested. As difficult as it is for an applicant to prove himself and get the job, it is equally difficult for an interview to ask the right set of questions, read between the answers if the person is genuine and to put map the correct person for the correct job role. A recruiter carries a huge responsibility as one wrong hiring or one wrong rejection can cost much more than one employee in the organization. It can cost organization immeasurable effects. Many organizations now act as a mediator for elderly care and personal care assistants in UK and USA.

Recruiters are in shoulder to shoulder competition in headhunting the best of talent. On the other hand, a recruiter can be a career maker or a breaker for an individual. A recruiter’s responsibility is twofold!

Recruitment of Carers

Recruiters undergo many dilemmas while considering an individual. Every recruiter looks for some qualities for an individual which are integral to the job profile. Some job roles demand impeccable technical skills while some require great interpersonal skills and some jobs just expect the employee to be an obedient and hard worker. Some jobs are suitable for a fresher while some need years of slogging. On being asked, one of the major dilemma faced by the recruiters is while interviewing people who are above 40 years of age.

People aged 40 and above when opting for a job change, there may be several reasons. Expecting pay raise, need of relocation, switching for more exposure, and many other things could the reasons of job change. As you age you find it hard to move around your house and you may need a lift installed – which may be another reason to change your job. Recruiters, while interviewing, focus on all of these probable reasons and try to understand the job requirements of these elderly candidates to place them at the right profile.

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Difficulties that the Recruiters Face

There are numerous difficulties that the recruiters face while interviewing an elderly candidate. Here are some most apparent factors that cause the recruitment process of elderly candidate difficulty:


The candidate who is more than 40 years of age, it ought to have an extensive experience. Although huge experience is always a plus, it has some downsides to it. The candidate has a certain approach to learning and understanding things. When into a new role in a new organization, elderly employees face challenges in unlearning that they have known for so many years. Since every job requires learning new and unlearning old things, it becomes a challenge for heavily experienced individuals.

Skill set:

The qualification of an elderly candidate no matter how high is bound to be outdated. With technology and revision of curriculum every year, there is always a very high possibility that something which had academic importance about 20-25 years ago, may only be the basic today. On the other side, a fresh candidate, even if a fresher might have studied something is now valid and widely functional in the current industry practices.

Reporting authority:

Recruiting an elderly candidate for a job role which demands the employee to report to the manager is a natural thing. But if the manager of the job profile that has been offered to the elderly candidate, is younger to the candidate, many times there are observable ego clashes. The seniority of the candidate cannot be ignored by the manager similarly, the seniority of the job profile can also not be ignored. This raises a lot of clashes and thus creates discomfort in the workplace.


Generally, a young person has no bar while working with respect to the work hours, or the frequent travels, neither do they have any problem adapting to the work culture of the organization. But with elderly people, it is little difficult. Their enthusiasm deters after so many years of working, their responsibilities or sometimes health does not allow them to be in the office any time that is demanded. Also due to the same reasons, their area of work has to be confined as travelling every now and then is not appreciated by them. The way of working they have adapted to in their life is something which becomes a part of them and becomes unchangeable, and hence it becomes difficult for them to adapt to the new organization’s culture.

Although so many constraints, having elderly employees in the organization is always advisable. Experience and pay packages can be measures but there are a few things that an elderly person brings which are intangible; like discipline, maturity and grace. There are many recruiters who focus on the acquisition of such elderly talented men who could bring about very effective change in the organization. There are many requirement agencies around the globe who facilitate such recruitments. Many agencies are working elderly carers in UK, USA and other countries.


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Written by Eric Foley

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