50+ job-seekers need to keep their appearance as up-to-date as
TORONTO, Aug. 15 /CNW/ - Older job-seekers looking to re-enter the
workforce know they often have to work harder to convince potential employers
that their skills are up-to-date, and the first step is taking a good look in
"If your appearance is outdated, it sends a message to potential
employers that maybe your skills are outdated, too," says Sarah Welstead, 37,
co-founder and Managing Partner of RetiredWorker.ca, the largest employment
website in Canada designed specifically for post-retirement job-seekers. "When
50-plus job-seekers confound 'senior citizen' stereotypes, it's easier for
employers to focus on their knowledge and experience rather than their age."
But Welstead says older job-seekers don't have to look like fashion
plates or spend a lot of money. They just need to follow some simple
1. Remember that dress codes have changed a lot in the past 20 years: In
most offices 'casual Fridays' have taken over the whole week. Wearing
a 3-piece suit in a 'smart casual' environment will just make you
2. Dress appropriately for the position you want: If what you'd really
like is to work part-time in a garden center, wearing neatly-pressed
khakis and a cotton shirt tells the interviewer that you understand
3. If you bought it more than 5 years ago, don't wear it to the
interview: That 'interview suit' you bought in 1989 is now out of
style. A pair of khakis and a shirt costs less than $100 at the Gap,
and demonstrates that you understand the modern workplace.
4. Visit the hairdresser or barber: If you can't remember the last time
you changed your hairstyle, it's time to visit the salon. If your
appearance says "I'm too old to care about what I look like any
more...", potential employers wonder if that's the same attitude
you'll have to your job.
5. Visit the dentist: Your teeth play a crucial role in your overall
appearance. Stained, chipped, cracked or missing front teeth can add
10+ years to your age - a $25 home teeth-whitening kit is a
6. Make your cellphone or PDA (unobtrusively obvious): Letting a
potential employer see your cellphone or Blackberry is a subtle way
to let them know that you are comfortable with 'high tech'. (But
don't take calls during interviews!)
"A polished, well-groomed and appropriate appearance is important for
everyone, but doubly so for older job-seekers," comments Welstead. "An
up-to-date appearance is a great way to show potential employers that your
skills are up-to-date as well."
About Retired Worker:
Retired Worker is the largest employment website in Canada designed for
retired people who want to work on a part-time, temporary or contract basis.
Launched in Toronto in October 2003, Retired Worker now has 24,000+ registered
job-seekers across Canada. For more information, visit www.retiredworker.ca.
For further information:
For further information: Media requiring more information or an
interview, please contact: Sarah Welstead, Managing Partner, Retired Worker,
(416) 809-7829, firstname.lastname@example.org