Older tech workers struggle to find jobs in Boston

Many software companies assume veteran candidates aren't up-to-date on the latest skills.

Tech is notoriously young industry.
Tech is a notoriously young industry. –Dina Rudick/Globe Staff

Sometimes having 25+ years of experience on your resume is a bad thing — especially if you work in technology.

As The Boston Globe reports, even though tech talent is in high demand in Massachusetts and around the country, many older workers say companies and startups aren’t interested in hiring veteran candidates, who they worry might not be up with the latest skills, or wouldn’t fit in with a youthful company culture.

Beverly Kahn, president of Swampscott-based recruiting firm New Dimensions in Technology, told the Globe that if she recommended tech workers in their 50s or 60s to her clients, they’d “laugh” at her.

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After all, tech leaders have been pretty open about their disinterest in older workers.

For example, Brian Halligan, chief executive of the Cambridge software company HubSpot Inc., told the New York Times in 2013 that he likes to hire “young kids,” while Mark Zuckerberg once said, “Young people are just smarter.”

This mentality can make it very hard for older tech workers to find employment, especially if they’ve recently lost a job.

In response, older tech workers told the Globe they’re doing more than just keeping up with the latest skills. They’re also hiding factors that might betray their age: dying gray hair, neglecting to mention children, even omitting experience from their resumes.

Read the full Globe story here.

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