50 Best Companies For Older Workers

Over 50 worker looking thoughtfulAn older worker is bypassed for someone younger and cheaper. A 55-year-old applies for 100 jobs, but is told that she's "overqualified." There have been countless stories like this since the recession. But what about the companies that truly value older workers? The annual ranking released Monday from the AARP and the Society for Human Resources Management spotlights the 50 best employers this year for workers aged 50-plus.

The top 10 are:

1. National Institute of Health

2. Scripps Health

3. Atlantic Health System

4. The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

5. Mercy Health System

6. The YMCA of Greater Rochester

7. West Virginia University

8. Bon Secours Virginia

9. National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

10. WellStar Health System

(You can read the rest of the list here.) Just a cursory glance at this list, and it's clear that if you are over 50 and want to be treated right, you should head to the health care industry. Twenty-two of the 50 employers on the list are in the health sector, mainly health-care providers, but also insurers, such as Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina and Tufts Health Plan. After all, employers with older customers tend to want older workers. Few people want to receive tips on diabetes management from a 24-year-old.

"We consider our mature, seasoned workers to be an enormous wealth of talent," wrote Scripps Health, which took the No. 2 spot, in a news release, "as they bring both education and life-long experience to health care, traits that are critical when caring for our patients."

More: Health Care Jobs In Highest Demand In 2013

Other Take-Aways:

The best employers offer pretty amazing perks.
Most of the employers on the list share a rich array of benefits, such as the ability to work from home, financial planning workshops and job training. But there are also some particularly extraordinary extras, things like free prostate cancer, skin cancer and hearing loss screenings (Atlantic Health System), salary advances when times are tight (Scripps Health), the option to work seasonally, while keeping full-year benefits (Mercy Health System), and even cooking and Spanish classes (FCCI Insurance Group).

The top spot, the National Institutes of Health, offers personal finance seminars on topics such as estate planning and social security, investment funds that reallocate assets depending on your age, on-site child and grandchild care, contract and part-time work for its retirees, and anniversary parties for its long-time workers. It's little surprise that 47 percent of employees are 50-plus, and that the average older worker has been with the NIH for more than 18 years.

Higher ed institutions can be great places to work. Seven colleges and universities made the top 50 list: West Virginia University, Cornell University, George Mason University, Swarthmore College, MIT, the University of Pittsburgh and American University. These institutions are particularly generous to their retirees, with opportunities for temporary work, discounts on sports and cultural events, free lectures, and retirement planning workshops.

And as the workforce ages, and the economy heals, perks for older workers are likely to multiply. Businesses are beginning to realize that in tight times, employee experience probably isn't the place to scrimp.

Older Workers Reinvent Themselves, One Tweet a Time

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Network Marketing may Be Your Best Career Move for the young, the old, the overqualified,
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June 24 2013 at 12:07 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

@Aunti Occupy: That is not true that blacks are getting all the jobs. It is a known fact that whites have always had and will have all the privileges.

June 23 2013 at 4:28 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
default user

I f race and sexual orientation is considered discrimination so should be age discrimination.

June 23 2013 at 4:24 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Aunti Occupy

Changing bed pans is not what they had in mind.

June 23 2013 at 4:06 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Aunti Occupy's comment

There is a "hidden" component to health jobs that you might not think about, especially if you are younger. Younger people have stronger immune systems (generally) than older people.
Working in healh care jobs can be hazardous to your health, and employers DO know that.

June 25 2013 at 5:31 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Everyone knows these companies are discriminating...why isn't the gov getting involved...Threats..scarring employees.. Whats sad is they have figured out if they scare you you will do anything...cheap too. SAD..only in corporate America is this tolerated...

June 23 2013 at 3:16 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to j.doughnut's comment
Aunti Occupy

Over qualification is not discrimination. I was told their Baby-Boomers are all retiring and that I would not really fit in with young passionate Spanish speaking young people.

June 23 2013 at 4:10 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Oh the goverment is involved! They are the ones that are threatining and scaring people.

June 23 2013 at 4:11 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

I never did the casting couch, to get a job. I think that system is a piece of filth. Door number one, is your qualifications. Practically no one gets a job that way any more. Door number two- who you know-practically everyone who is not rich gets their job that way. Door number three the rich family insiders. They hire each others children and their own family and pay off the endowment committees, etc. Lots and Lots of people at the top are playing door number three. It pays to have a dumb bama from Lough/slaw lol school as Presee-dent of the JOKE. Whatever.

June 23 2013 at 3:07 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Reverse discrimination and age discrimination have been the Tsunami Silent Crimes of the 21st Century. Companies and stores want to hire folks who 'fit into' the group well. Right. watched too many crappy sitcoms on Major Media TV lately? and The Today Girls are supposed to be the one example to disprove the millions of folks who are victims. And the ol b-ches and b-sturds like Rain Fonda, Oprey Windfall,Tom Brokeall, the whor from the View, and a host of other 70 to 80yo greedy somethings still have it out for the the more intellectual baby boomers. It is still hitting the folks who are not 'sold out' from both directions.

June 23 2013 at 3:00 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

My comment is, if they hire younger and cheaper, then why do we not see prices come down? The money goes to CEO's so they can live up and beyond what they really need. They have destroyed our country! They should be done away with like they did a lot of Unions.

June 23 2013 at 2:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

P.S. Don't try Raleigh. These Jim Crow era folks here don't like older white women either.

June 23 2013 at 2:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

those companies are great, but I don't want to move all the way across the country just to find a job.

June 23 2013 at 2:02 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to willow's comment

Actually, did you mean "just to HUNT for a job" instead of "just to FIND a job"?

I discovered a long time ago that the job boards have "distance limits" on what you will see on the online listings. My wife had checked while visiting Charlotte, and called me to tell me there were dozens of jobs in my field. I JUMPED on the same online job site, and there was only ONE in my field, and it was roughly 250 miles away... NONE listed in Charlotte.

(Don't have a 'local' phone number? Gotcha.
Don't have a local mailing address? Gotcha.
Your computer/browser registration address isn't 'local' to the job postings? Gotcha.
Work history out of state?... Well, you get the idea.)

June 25 2013 at 5:26 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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