McDonald’s is well known for being a massive employer who often provides that vital ‘first job’. But new research has revealed older workers are delivering a significant plus to restaurants.
Research conducted by Lancaster University Management School examined the performance of more than 400 McDonald’s restaurants across the UK. David Fairhurst, Senior Vice President, Chief People Officer, McDonald’s UK & Northern Europe explained: “We have people aged 16 to 83 who work for us. The research has found that employers aged 60 plus customer satisfaction is 20 percent higher in restaurants which have got older workers as part of the blend.”
Over two thirds of restaurant managers questioned responded positively to the survey, citing later life workers as empathising with and connecting well with customers. Almost half noted later life workers’ ability to go the extra mile to deliver the best possible customer service. Also, 44 percent valued later life workers bringing mentoring skills to the workplace, helping younger colleagues develop and mature.
Professor Paul Sparrow, Director of the Centre for Performance-led HR, Lancaster University, said: “Employers must rise to the challenge of adapting to Britain’s ageing workforce, and this research shows that there can be a sizeable prize at stake for those which succeed in doing so.”
Meanwhile Rachel Krys, Campaign Director, The Employer’s Forum on Age, said: “It’s vital businesses across the UK continue to recognise the strong business case for age diversity. “
With many older people currently seeking to stay in work or pick up more flexible roles, McDonald’s is rapidly becoming a perhaps surprising employer for this rapidly-growing sector of society. David urges older people and those in job transition to consider a career in hospitality with the firm. David added: “We’ve got to role model and share these stories so other people who are having a sector change can get out there and see the ways in which their skills can be valued and used.”
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12 August 2009