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55+ Employability Learning Environment

The ageing workforce in Europe imposes the provision of flexibleemployability environment since many European SMEs and 55+ areunprepared to meet this challenge. On one hand, SMEs do not valueenough their older employees due to stereotyping and lack of knowledgeand consultancy. They turn out to be in a «demographic trap» notknowing how to manage their new workforce: more 55+ and less youngeremployees. On the other hand, 55+ are not very willing to stay later atwork due to lack of flexible employment opportunities and skills adequateto the new realities. Therefore, both target groups need to access LLLopportunities and services in relation to employability so that they canbetter understand and respect their cultures and find common solutionsfor their mutual benefit: SMEs – business growth and competitiveness;55+ - personal growth and self-esteem. Outputs: multi-feature electronicplatform (two databases, learning and consulting areas, nationalemployment legislation repositories) in BG, DE, ES, IT, PL, EN); learningmaterials in Age Management, Social Competence, ICT for Adults,English for Adults, Physical Activities and Health Issues (printed andInternet-based in BG, DE, ES, IT, PL, EN) – blended and cooperativelearning; questionnaires (research) reports – on quality, project progress,pilot testing, partner-country and collated report, trans-national report;procedures – reporting, and quality and evaluation; pilot testing; partnermeetings ; plans – evaluation and dissemination; dissemination forms;partnership e- communication system; web site (BG, DE, ES, IT, PL,EN); dissemination and exploitation events and materials.Impact: SMEs and 55+ will have LLL opportunities so that they canimprove their employability perspectives: on the one hand, the former willbecome more aware of and tolerant to the specific nature of their ageingworkforce and will better use the legislation tools for retaining it, and onthe other hand, the latter will acquire new skills and update theircompetences so as to meet the challenges of the European knowledgebased-society job positions – diverse skills, intensive usage of ICT andlanguages, physical fitness, ability to work in a mixed-age team, ability toinnovate, etc. In addition, 55+ will be provided with more and flexibleemployment opportunities and SMEs will be able to easily searchcompetent 55+ employees and use them as valuable human resources.A change of the attitudes of employers and younger employees isexpected in relation to the new image of 55+ “being productive, creative,and useful for the benefit of business and society”. A change of theattitudes of 55+ is also expected so that they become more willing to staylater at work and participate more actively in LLL. Both target groups willhave the opportunity to discuss employment issues with theircounterparts across Europe and exchange practices. Furthermore, bettercooperation of SMEs, training providers, social partners and decisionmakers is envisaged.
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