Growing unemployment in the 50+ age group is fueled by multiple factors and applies to blue collar workers and more senior positions, alike. The reasons why the baby boomers generation is leaving the job market include job cuts, declining health status and worker burn-out. That last phenomenon is quite common among generations who have spent their entire professional careers working for just one employer.


On top of this, as a recruitment agency, we are seeing other examples of a mismatch between the 50+ generation and today’s job market. The obstacles to hiring include: low mobility, unwillingness to relocate, lack of fluency in foreign languages and an inflexible approach to the level of vacancies being offered. It needs to be said, that both sides have a problem. The market is dominated by corporations who expect their staff to work at an increasingly faster pace and be on top of new and changing technologies. To the 50+ demographic, the pressure and the demands placed on all workers prove to be an impossible to overcome barrier and mean the relationship ends after the trial period.


Our society is ageing. This problem will only get worse. Presently, around 30% Poles are in the 50+ age group. It is estimated that by 2050 this age group will account for more than 40%, and by 2060 for more than 50% of the Polish population. Whether these people will completely vanish off the job market will depend, among other things, on the employers and their readiness to change attitudes to team-building. Presently, a lot of businesses opt to hire younger people, university graduates or expats. In the face of the growing shortage of workers, the biggest challenges today’s businesses are facing is changing their mindset and maturing to a point when they will be ready to hire older workers, capable of applying their expertise and experience to support the various areas of a company’s operations. And there’s also the need to adapt the working methods to the given employees.


Let’s hope that the growing unemployment rate in the 50+ segment won’t become a permanent trend.


Grzegorz Piotrowski

Senior HR Consultant with Professional (part of LeasingTeam Group)