Discrimination in the IT field only seems to increase in California and other states. Specifically, age discrimination has been a problem that has grown in recent years. In 2015, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission found that Intel had discriminated against eight older workers who were laid off.
Why does age discrimination happen in the IT industry?
Unfortunately, in spite of state and federal employment laws, age discrimination happens. Even when their skills are highly in demand, workers who are older experience discrimination. This is happening not just in IT but everywhere, but in the tech industry, it’s a bigger problem. Many tech companies are startups. These businesses are often founded and operated by younger people.
Additionally, there is a common misconception that older people are not tech-savvy and are clueless when it comes to technology. This is a problem that can lead to older employees or prospective employees being passed over for a wide range of benefits. They may not get a raise or promotion they deserve, may be let go from their position or may not even be hired in spite of being the most qualified person for the job.
Additional concerns from older employees who face discrimination
Under state and federal employment law, age discrimination is illegal. However, older employees still face it and end up filing discrimination claims. Some of the frequent complaints these workers make involve the employer’s methods for hiring, promoting or laying off employees. Often, older employees end up the most susceptible to all of these factors, according to the EEOC.
Older IT employees can better protect themselves in the workplace by embracing all the newer technologies and working methods. For instance, if they know all the latest mobile devices and apps, it can improve their chances of not facing discrimination. Anything that can be done on a desktop should be easy to do on a smartphone or tablet. Learning digital platforms such as Zoom is essential as well.