SINGAPORE: A growing number of senior citizens in Singapore are expressing frustration over what they perceive as age discrimination in the job market.

They claim companies look at age, not skills and prioritise younger candidates over experienced, older professionals, leading to a lack of job opportunities for those in their 50s and beyond.

This issue was brought to light on the Complaint Singapore Facebook group, where one shared his struggle with the current employment landscape.

He lamented, “Why is it so hard for a Singaporean to get a job now? Employers look at age, not our resumes.”

Despite being shortlisted for second interviews by two companies, he had yet to hear back from both companies. This struck a chord with many, igniting a discussion online.

One commenter echoed these concerns: “Too many foreigners are taking over our jobs in Singapore.” This was echoed by others who felt that local policies and the influx of foreign talent have made it harder for Singaporeans to secure employment.

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Another user shared his personal struggle with job hunting after turning 50. He shared that finding a job at his age was extremely difficult. “This is a fact. I was hoping the government could do more to help us get a job,” he stated.

The financial and emotional toll of prolonged unemployment was highlighted by another user who had been sending out resumes for seven months without any success.

She said, “It’s sad. Seven months of sending my CV out and not even one call. I wonder if the job postings are real. Days pass, months end, and bills pile up.” 

However, some commenters offered a different perspective, suggesting that job seekers might need to adjust their expectations.

One user pointed out, “Reevaluate your expectations. Are you expecting too high a salary or too high a position? If your job can be easily replaced by a younger staff at a cheaper rate, then what’s your selling point?

Finding a job in Singapore is not easy; you just have to keep going.”

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Another user pointed out a trend among Singaporean employers: “Mostly, they are looking for younger candidates.”

Despite these challenges, some suggested that older job seekers could still find opportunities if they are not too picky. “Most companies are still pretty discriminatory about age, but as long as you’re not too choosy, you can still work part-time.

There are a lot of part-time roles around that pay well,” remarked another.

Economic factors also play a role in the current job market. One netizen observed that the “economy is not too good”, and it’s affecting every industry, leading to a surplus of candidates for too few positions.

This has resulted in employers taking their time to select the best candidates, prolonging the job search process for many.

Recently, ManpowerGroup’s survey, released on June 11, indicated that job hiring optimism in Singapore has declined for three consecutive quarters, especially in the finance and real estate sectors. /TISG

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