While age discrimination against people who are 40 or older is prohibited in Wisconsin under the federal Age Discrimination in Employment Act, it is still a pervasive problem. This issue is especially apparent within the tech industry because of the mindset people have about the roles of younger and older workers. Tech companies should recognize the vital contributions that older workers can make.
According to HR Dive, younger workers are perceived as having superior technical skills and are much likelier to be promoted than older workers. In the tech industry, the average age for employees is 38 as compared to 43 for people in other industries. Older employees have superior soft skills, however. When they also have good tech skills, they can make substantial contributions to their jobs.
Training workers and supervisors about age discrimination can help to prevent it from happening. However, a study performed by Hiscox in 2019 found that around 66% of workers had not received any training about age discrimination in the workplace in the previous year. Employers should consider training older workers to help them to acquire new skills so that they can continue in their positions. Having several generations in a workplace can allow companies to benefit from the unique skills that they each have to offer.
While age discrimination in the workplace against workers who are 40 or older is illegal, it is a persistent problem. Older workers who believe that they have been discriminated against because of their age by their employers may want to talk to experienced employment law attorneys. The lawyers might review the facts and circumstances to determine whether discrimination appears to have occurred. If they agree to accept representation of the case, the attorneys may help their clients to gather evidence and submit age discrimination charges with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.