Attitudes to work and computer training : a survey of older work trainees and Canterbury employers.
AbstractThe present research examined attitudes towards older workers, the ageing
workforce and computer training. The sample comprised 29 Canterbury employers
and 140 trainees from the Training Opportunities Programmes (TOPS) aged 19 to 69.
The Questionnaire survey of Canterbury Employers was designed to obtain
information about the impact an ageing workforce may have on businesses, the value
of older workers and the influence of computer training in the workplace, as this has
been seen as a significant issue in the employability of older workers. The
Questionnaire survey of TOPS Trainees was compiled to obtain information about
trainees' views on work and computer training. Both questionnaires were sent to the
participants by post.
Results indicated that Canterbury employers (N=29) did not envisage that
there would be a significant impact on their organisations in the short term as a result
of the ageing workforce, however, they expected positive influences of the ageing
workforce on their organisations. Responses also showed that Canterbury employers
valued the skills and attributes of their older workers and they were willing to provide
computer training courses that were job-related. Older workers are regarded as having
useful experiences, being loyal to the organisation, having low absenteeism and
having a strong work ethic.
Responses from TOPS trainees (N=140) were divided into two groups: the
older trainees (40 years of age and older) and the younger trainees (less than 40 years
old). 84% had previously been in full-time work. Older trainees had more work
experiences, primarily as either labourers or office workers. Findings indicated there
was no significant difference between older and younger trainees on the General
Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12) in terms of psychological health. On the Work
Aspect Preference Scale (WAPS), older and younger trainees differed significantly in
the Life Style, which measures the effect that employment might have on where and
how one lives, and Altruism, which measures a concern for assisting others. Although
older trainees were found to have less computer experience than younger trainees did,
they appeared to attend more computer training classes and generally had better
attitudes towards computers.
TypeTheses / Dissertations