Channel players will need to start looking at their employment policies sooner rather than later to comply with a new ageism directive that will become law next October, trade union Amicus has warned.
Peter Skyte, Amicus national officer with responsibility for IT, told CRN: “The Equal Treatment at Work Directive has been around for some time, but next year a new strand covering age discrimination will become law. Employers should start revising all their recruitment, selection, promotion and training procedures to make sure they comply.”
A survey of 500 IT workers, conducted by the Labour Research Department on behalf of Amicus, showed that 71 per cent of respondents believe their employer treats people less favourably because of age.
Recruitment and redundancy selection were the two areas where most people felt discrimination exists (39 per cent and 37 per cent respectively), closely followed by pay (33 per cent), promotion (33 per cent) and training (29 per cent).
“There is a real perception that IT is a young person’s industry, so it was quite a surprise to discover that some young people surveyed felt that they were discriminated against for being too young,” added Skyte.
Nick Kalisperas, director at IT trade body Intellect, said that there is not much awareness of the forthcoming legislation. “We have to make sure there is a balance between this directive and not over-burdening businesses,” he said.
“For younger workers, we have to ensure they have a clear and attractive career path, and for older workers industry must make sure their skills are not lost.”
Leanne Gravil, branch manager at VAR CBC Computer Systems, said: “When we are looking to take on a new recruit we want someone who will be with the company for 15 to 20 years, not someone who is nearing retirement age and will be with us only for perhaps five years.
“I find that older applicants have usually been made redundant and are trying to get into IT purely because they need a job, not because they really love the industry, whereas the younger applicants tend to have studied IT at college and really have a passion for it.”
Struggling security titan makes three board appointments after investor took 5.8 per cent stake last month
Commvault ousted its CEO in May and has since undergone a radical refocus
As employees demand more flexible working environments, CRN asks how the channel is adapting to the changing working landscape
Wall Street less than impressed with Oracle's growth as cloud numbers remain hidden