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Employing older workers: LaTrobe Valley Bus Lines

Find out how LaTrobe Valley Bus Lines benefited from employing older workers.  

A man behind the wheel of a bus and a woman behind him smiling
  • LaTrobe Valley Bus Lines recognised recruitment bias against older applicants meant they may be missing opportunities to hire good workers, particularly in a tight labour market.  
  • The company introduced best practice recruitment policies and practices and training to address recruitment bias.  
  • Older workers are adding significant value to the company.  

LaTrobe Valley Bus Lines provides public transport services for LaTrobe Valley and Gippsland residents. Looking for new staff, the company received several applicants from older workers. Facing a tight labour market, the company recognised recruitment bias against older applicants meant they may be missing opportunities to hire good workers.  

The company introduced several initiatives to address this bias: 

  • Staff participated in training to tackle myths and biases about older workers and to raise awareness about the benefits that they can bring to organisations.  
  • Leaders also participated in training to address any implicit bias and to recognise their role in stereotyping older workers.  
  • It invested in building an age-inclusive culture that aspires to retain older workers and values their contribution.  
  • The company also shared practical information to ensure best practice recruitment policies and procedures are in place to limit biases throughout the hiring process.   

Following these initiatives, the company hired 2 older workers, who have been a great asset to the business. 

LaTrobe Valley Bus Lines identified some lessons for others: 

  • The training around myths and stereotypes about older employees was invaluable. As a result, our leaders and team members learned a lot about false assumptions and how to mitigate them in the workplace.   
  • Older workers add a lot of value. Give older job applicants a chance or, where possible, engage in blind recruitment, removing barriers for older workers to gain employment and minimising age-related bias.  
  • As an employer, we have a legal responsibility to prevent age discrimination and harassment from occurring in the workplace. But, recruiting and retaining older workers also makes good business sense. 

“We learned addressing recruitment-related biases and investing in an age-inclusive culture is incredibly valuable.” 

  • Transport, Postal and Warehousing
  • VIC
  • Published 15 Dec 2022
  • Updated 25 Jul 2023