Why Training Older Employees is Less Effective

29 Pages Posted: 15 Jul 2011

See all articles by Thomas Zwick

Thomas Zwick

University of Würzburg - Business Administration & Economics; Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW); Maastricht University - Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA)

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

This paper shows that training of older employees is less effective. Training effectiveness is measured with respect to key dimensions such as career development, earnings, adoption of new skills, flexibility or job security. Older employees also pursue less ambitious goals with their training participation. An important reason for these differences during the life cycle might be that firms do not offer the “right” training forms and contents. Older employees get higher returns from informal and directly relevant training and from training contents that can be mainly tackled by crystallised abilities. Training incidence in the more effective training forms is however not higher for older employees. Given that other decisive variables on effectiveness such as training duration, financing and initiative are not sensitive to age, the wrong allocation of training contents and training forms therefore is critical for the lower effectiveness of training.

Keywords: Training, Older Employees, Linked-Employer-Employee Data

JEL Classification: J10, J24, J28

Suggested Citation

Zwick, Thomas, Why Training Older Employees is Less Effective (2011). ZEW - Centre for European Economic Research Discussion Paper No. 11-046. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1886428 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1886428

Thomas Zwick (Contact Author)

University of Würzburg - Business Administration & Economics ( email )

Sanderring 2
Wuerzburg, D-97070
Germany

Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW) ( email )

P.O. Box 10 34 43
L 7,1 D-68161 Mannheim
Germany

Maastricht University - Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA) ( email )

P.O. Box 616
Maastricht, MD6200
Netherlands

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