Hyannis (September 13, 2019) – In recognition of National Employ Older Workers Week—September 22 through 28 – the MassHire Cape and Islands Workforce Board  will recognize three local organizations for their outstanding efforts to employ and engage older workers. Older workers are a key segment of each of these organizations’ staffing and critical to their success.

The Age Forward Employer Awards were initiated in 2018 in part to celebrate the contributions of older workers to the Cape and Islands economy. The median age in Barnstable County was 52 in 2017 and is rising. If an organization wants to thrive and grow here, it’s critical that they adapt to the ageing of the available workforce. Winners of the Age Forward Employer Awards have learned how to recruit, engage and retain older workers.

This year’s awards will go to Hy-Line Cruises, the Town of Barnstable Recreation Department and the Cape Cod Chronicle. Local businesses that understand the strengths, preferences and needs of our aging workforce have an edge when competing for talent in a tight labor market. All of this year’s winners were nominated by employees proud of their employers and satisfied with their jobs. Each of this year’s winners relies on current employees as ambassadors in attracting new workers and all offer “career pathways” for employees’ continued growth within their organization. These best practices and others will be highlighted in a video documentary produced by the MassHire Cape and Islands Career Center and scheduled for release via YouTube and social media later this year.

This year’s awards ceremony will be held at the Hyannis Holiday Inn on September 24, 2019. The breakfast is free of charge but pre-registration is required at https://tinyurl.com/AgeForwardAwards or by contacting Razza at razza@masshire-capeandislandswb.com or call 508-775-5900.

This year’s winners represent the resiliency of our region’s business community and illustrate its ability to adapt to emerging trends. “Each organization is unique,” notes Workforce Board Executive Director Kara Galvin. “But we hope that by shining a spotlight on what works for these Age Forward employers, we will encourage others to make changes in how they relate to those job seekers over 55.”

Nominations for the award were solicited through local newspapers, social media and via an on-line from customers, employees and business owners themselves. Nominees were then asked to complete a questionnaire detailing their personnel practices in arenas important to older workers: scheduling, benefits, training and retirement. Winners were chosen by a panel of experts in workforce development and human resource management.

The Age Forward Employer Awards is a joint initiative of the MassHire Cape and Islands Workforce Board and Elder Services of Cape Cod & Islands, and co-sponsored this year by AARP. Initiated by the U.S. Department of Labor over 50 years ago, National Employ Older Workers Week is celebrated during the last full week in September.