The Average Retirement Age Is Rising: Here's What That'll Mean Where You Work

With more Americans choosing to stay employed into their late 60s, 70s, and beyond, it’s time for a cultural adjustment.

Alison Southwick
Alison Southwick and Robert Brokamp, CFP
Jun 24, 2019 at 10:51AM
Other

Americans, in general, are living longer, which is good news almost any way you slice it. But that does mean that our retirement nest eggs may have to carry us further, lest we run out of money before we run out of time. One way to reduce your odds of having that problem is simply to work longer, and for a range of reasons -- not all of them financial -- more people are choosing to do just that. But the growing population of older workers is requiring businesses to think a bit differently and adapt in new ways.

In this episode of Motley Fool Answers, cohosts Alison Southwick and Robert Brokamp are joined by Susan Weinstock, the AARP's vice president of financial resiliency programming, to talk about the many reasons Americans are putting off retirement, as well as the challenges for individuals and companies that come with a workforce that's skewing older -- and the benefits. But first, it's a "What's Up, Allison?" segment about why the tech world is about to build a better stock exchange by making one that's slower. 

To catch full episodes of all The Motley Fool's free podcasts, check out our podcast center. A full transcript follows the video.

This video was recorded on June 18, 2019.

Alison Southwick: This is Motley Fool Answers! I'm Alison Southwick and I'm joined, as always, by Robert Brokamp, personal finance expert here at The Motley Fool.

Robert Brokamp: Hello... Alison... Southwick!

Southwick: I never know how it's going to come out, but anyway. In this week's episode we're joined by Susan Weinstock from AARP to talk about the trend of delaying retirement, the aging workforce, and why it's often a good thing to work in retirement. All that, and more, on this week's episode of Motley Fool Answers.

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Brokamp: Alison, what's up?

Southwick: Is that how you normally say it?

Brokamp: I never know how it's going to come out.

Southwick: All right, whatever. Well, Bro, I have three things for you today.

Brokamp: Three things? That sounds awesome!

Southwick: It does. It might sound familiar. They're really one thing, but... All right, whatever. Just stick with me.

So for some of our more seasoned investors out there, you'll remember a time when stocks used to trade in fractional shares.

Brokamp: Oh, I do remember that!

Southwick: One-sixteenth, to be exact. Do you know why?

Brokamp: I don't remember.

Southwick: Oh, here's why. OK, this is crazy. So, going back 400 years, Spanish traders used gold doubloons, which were divided into eight pieces...

Brokamp: All right. Pieces of gold!

Southwick: ... so you could count them on your fingers and thumbs didn't count, literally, so everything was in eighths.

Brokamp: They're all Simpsons characters. They didn't have five fingers.

Southwick: There you go! So unlike currencies that have a base of 10, Spanish gold doubloons had a base of eight, meaning that the smallest denomination was one-eighth of a doubloon. And when the New York Stock Exchange was founded in 1817, it was based on none other than this Spanish trading system. Then, in 1997, they cut that one-eighth in half to one-sixteenth, aka... Do you remember this? A "teenie." They called it a teenie. And they cut it from one-eighth to one-sixteenth during what was called the "teenie revolution," probably the most boring revolution ever. It wasn't until 2001, close to 200 years into the existence of the New York Stock Exchange, that it and other U.S. exchanges finally switched to decimals.

I was reading an LA Times article about this controversial time of going from fractionals to decimals and the article was citing some of the possible negative impacts of the switch and they had this gem. "But veteran trader, Bernard Madoff, said that professionals will find a way to make money." Indeed.

Brokamp: And he was right.

Southwick: Indeed they will, Bernie.

Brokamp: How's prison, going?

Southwick: So, yes, it only took the New York Stock Exchange 200 years to switch over from an antiquated system of accounting, which tells you something about Wall Street's aversion to change and technology. This is all a long aside; but, again, try to stay with me. I'm trying to say that Wall Street doesn't like change and doesn't embrace technology, which brings me to my second thing; the battle between tech companies and Wall Street.

Is it any wonder that young [sassy] Silicon Valley doesn't love to work with stodgy, old Wall Street? Often because Wall Street is interested in short-term gains while Silicon Valley leaders can be starry-eyed entrepreneurs with a long-term vision. So one trend we're seeing is that tech companies -- like Spotify -- are trying to avoid Wall Street, such as during the IPO process.

Let's remind everyone, briefly, how an IPO works. Feel free to interrupt me if I get anything wrong, here. A company decides they want to go public, so they choose an investment bank for advice in underwriting. They go on what's called a roadshow, where the investment bank makes pitches and sells shares of the company to its favorite clients and cronies, often at a lowball price. The favorite clients and cronies are hoping that if they buy the shares of the company, the stock will "pop" or go up really fast and high on the first day of its trading on the secondary market -- such as the NYSE or NASDAQ. So then these again favorite clients and cronies of the investment bank can unload the shares for a profit to people like you and me. Did I get that right?

Brokamp: It's about right, yes.

Southwick: Let's say you're a tech company going public in this scenario. You're using the IPO process to generate more capital by selling shares of your business so you can take that money and invest it back into the company and make it grow. Your major money-making event is when the investment bank is selling shares to its favorite clients and cronies, where, like I said, they tend to lowball the price so that the investors get that pop.

It means as a tech company, you're selling yourself on sale and the investors are the ones who benefit. Maybe some of them are truly invested in you and your company for the long haul, but most are just looking to resell the shares they got on sale for full price; again, when the shares go on the secondary market on the NYSE. Did I get that right?

Brokamp: I think so.

Southwick: So Spotify decided to go a different route and just do a direct listing. Rather than selling shares to institutional investors in advance of the first day of trading, it allowed its existing shareholders to directly offer their holdings through the market. With the direct listing the bank won't set the price. It's pure supply and demand on the secondary market.

As CNBC said, "By almost any standard, the Spotify IPO has been a success." Granted, Spotify wasn't looking to raise any money. They had plenty of VC cash. Also, Spotify had a desirable name for retail investors, so there was probably pent-up demand. But could companies like Airbnb or other unicorns follow suit? Slack is. Well, we'll see if this happens more.

[According to] John Fitzgibbon of IPOScoop.com, we shouldn't expect Wall Street to embrace direct listings as a viable option, "because there's very little payday for Wall Street in a direct listing," which is exactly the point, and brings me to my final and third thing. If tech companies don't love Wall Street, is there a way to make a better Wall Street?

What's most wrong with the equities market? Eric Ries, tech entrepreneur and author of The Lean Startup believes that today's companies are too focused on things that revolve around short-term price increases; such as beating quarterly projections by Wall Street analysts, shrinking their budgets of research and development to cut costs, [and] dealing with activist investors. He believes the market's focus on short-term, quarterly results leads to a decline in innovation and he points to a 2017 study by the public policy think tank, Third Way, which showed that going public with a company [caused] a 40% decline in patents within five years after listing. [It's because of] the result of pressure to satisfy analysts' short-term expectations, they say.

This also makes going public less enticing for companies, especially with VC money floating around. They don't really need to do it. By the time these companies IPO -- we can start investing in them, meaning you and me -- most of the growth could be in the rearview mirror.

So here's [an idea by] Eric Ries, tech entrepreneur and author of The Lean Startup. Just last month the SEC approved the creation of... Did you hear about it?

Brokamp: I didn't.

Southwick: ... the Long-Term Stock Exchange. Or the LTSE. I think it should be called the "lit-zy".

Brokamp: The lit-zy.

Southwick: Or something like that. Isn't that cuter? It's a Silicon Valley-based exchange aimed at tech start-ups that want to go public while taking their time to develop their products and services. With the LTSE there will be rules to limit executive bonuses, require more disclosure for milestones, and reward long-term shareholders with more voting power. Executive pay and bonuses must be tied to long-term performance, such as 10 years.

Yeah! So LinkedIn's Reid Hoffman, Marc Andreessen, and Peter Thiel's Founders Fund are investors in the Long-Term Stock Exchange. Of course, it's targeting companies that would be tech. Companies can do a list on the LTSE and the NYSE and they hope to start accepting clients by the end of the year. It will be the 14th equity market in the U.S. Isn't that crazy?

There's still a lot to be figured out with the LTSE, but it's exciting to see innovation, especially innovation intended to benefit those who think long term -- you know, Foolish investors. And that, Bro, is what's up.

[...]

Brokamp: Here's a question for all of you out there in Podcast Land. What was the average retirement age back in 1900? Think about it. Take a guess in your head. The answer is 76, which is kind of ridiculous since most people didn't actually live that long.

Southwick: I was going to guess never. Like you just worked and then walked straight into your plot.

Brokamp: Well, that was essentially it. If you lived that long, you retired for like a year or two and you only retired because you were physically not able to do anything anymore.

Susan Weinstock: Well, think about it. When they created Social Security, people's life span was about 66 and everybody was supposed to retire at 65 to get Social Security benefits. Right?

Brokamp: Right.

Weinstock: That's changed a bit.

Brokamp: Absolutely!

Southwick: Hey, who is that voice, Bro?

Brokamp: Where did that voice come from? Well, let me tell you. That voice belongs to Susan Weinstock, who is the vice president of financial resiliency programming at AARP. Susan, welcome to Motley Fool Answers!

Weinstock: Thank you! It's a pleasure to be here! It's exciting!

Brokamp: So that was the average retirement age back in 1900. By 1950 it had dropped down to age 70. By the year 2000 it had dropped down to 63. But since then it has started to creep up a little bit. People are deciding to work longer, and that's why we had Susan come in here to tell us why this is happening and then what the challenges are of working well into your 50s, 60s, and beyond. So welcome! Thank you for coming!

Weinstock: Thank you! Thank you for having me!

Southwick: Let's start with the numbers. What do we know about people working longer?

Weinstock: People are definitely working longer. You're absolutely right. There's a bunch of reasons. We're living longer healthier. The amount of time we spend disabled in our lives is actually shrinking, so we're living longer healthier. Why would you stop working at 50? What are you going to do with your life?

A lot of people have not recovered from the Great Recession, so they need to continue to work, but we also know people find purpose. Fulfillment. We hear about these people who "unretire". They actually retire at 66 or 67 and then they say, "Wait a second. This is kind of boring. Working gave me fulfillment. It gave me a purpose. It gave me a reason to get up in the morning. It was my social life. And it's gone now. And I want it back."

And so they'll unretire and they'll take a job doing something just to get back into the workforce to have a reason to get up in the morning and do something.

Brokamp: You mentioned life expectancy. Anyone listening to this podcast has a very reasonable chance of making it to 90 or 95. And when you think of retiring in your late 50s or early 60s and then spending the next three decades of your life at full-time leisure, that's not how a lot of people want to spend the last few decades of their lives.

Weinstock: Right. It's a reason you find purpose. It's a thing that you do to fill your day, but it also gives you meaning in your life. When you go out on a Saturday night with friends, it's something to talk about. So much of your life is spent working and a lot of people find that it's the major force in their life and they don't want to give it up.

And the way we work, now, is a lot different from the way we worked in 1900. You can be a worker that sits at a desk for many years and that's what we're seeing. A report just came out yesterday that talked about people who are working longer tend to live in metropolitan areas and tend to have desk jobs because they can. Their brains are fully functioning and there's no reason for them not to spend time continuing to work.

Brokamp: That all sounds wonderful and on the podcast we've talked before about the value of delaying retirement, especially if you're financially on the cusp of not having quite enough money; just delaying it by a few years is very beneficial. Higher Social Security benefits. More years contributing to your 401(k). Fewer years taking money from your 401(k). That's all great.

But there are some challenges to working later in life, correct? For example, there's longer unemployment trends for some people who are older.

Weinstock: Right. If you lose your job, it will take you double the time to find a new job [than] a younger worker. So that's a disturbing trend. It's also disturbing because if you think about the workforce, there are more jobs available now than there are people in this country to fill them. And so we spend a lot of time talking to employers about the value of older workers, because in some cases this seems to be the last bastion of discrimination.

Like it's OK to say negative comments about old people; things you would never say about other people with regard to other attributes. But being old -- it's OK to make jokes. So we continue to say, "These are valuable workers." In fact, in many cases, it's their institutional knowledge that's walking out the door. What are you doing to ensure that two years from now, all those people have left and then somebody says, "Hey, let's try doing this," and nobody realizes they tried it three years ago and it didn't work, and so now you're going to spend all this time and money because the institutional knowledge is gone.

It's really important to retain those older workers. Think about how you want to structure that job. It's sort of like curb cuts. Curb cuts were made for really disabled people; but they're great for people with bikes. They're great for people with strollers. They're great for people with scooters. You name it, they're great!

It's the same idea with workplace flexibility. I mean, new moms and new dads love workplace flexibility. Well, guess what? So do older workers, too. So employers can think about how they structure their workforce so they can give that flexibility to their workers and they can participate as they will, but they also bring so much to the workforce.

Brokamp: I read a survey recently. It said that a large percentage of people would love to do some sort of a phased retirement -- going from full-time to part-time and then retiring...

Weinstock: Yes...

Brokamp: ... but only 5% of companies actually have a formal plan for phased retirement.

Weinstock: Phased retirement is complicated, because if you have a pension, it can implicate your pension benefits. So if they say, "We're going to base your pension on your last five years of work," and your last five years, or your last two years, are your phasing out then you just took a big hit in your pension, so you don't want to do that. They need to structure it so that it will not hurt the pension plan. I think that's one of the biggest problems.

Brokamp: You mentioned earlier age discrimination and that is one of the last ways you can legally discriminate against people. And that's not just anecdotal. Legally it is an issue where you can fire people and age discrimination is at least part of the reason why you're firing them.

Weinstock: Actually, the Supreme Court, in the Gross decision in 2009, said that age discrimination had to be the only reason why this person was let go. So the standard -- the bar -- for proving age discrimination is higher than for other kinds of discrimination.

Actually, there's a bill in Congress. Just yesterday it passed out of the House Education and Labor Committee called the Protecting Older Workers Against Discrimination Act. POWADA is its acronym. This bill will right what the Supreme Court did and make age discrimination on par with other types of discrimination in the workplace and change the way that the Gross decision came down. It's going now to the House floor. I can give you the bill number. It's H.R. 1230.

There's a bill in the House, too. And they're bipartisan, actually. There's Republicans and Democrats on both bills. And the Senate bill is S.485. And if people want to learn more about that, they can go to action.aarp.org/ProtectOlderWorkers. There's more information about the bill and [they can] contact their congressperson and say, "I support this and I want to see this bill passed."

Brokamp: Just so people know, when you say the Gross decision, what you're talking about is a case of a guy named Jack Gross...

Weinstock: Right.

Brokamp: 54 years old. He was fired. He was able to prove that age was a factor, but the Supreme Court in 2009 said tough luck, because that wasn't the only reason.

Weinstock: Exactly.

Southwick: Is age discrimination an uniquely American problem or is this something facing people around the world? I imagine around the world ages are going up as far as life expectancy, but do people in other countries face the same level of discrimination? The same problems that we do here in America?

Weinstock: Well, it's kind of interesting because there's other countries that by population are older than we are -- Japan and places like that. So I think there's a certain reverence in some cultures for older people, but there's also still the same age discrimination issues depending on the country. We've actually been working with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in Europe on the future of work, and one of the issues with the future of work is longevity and staying in the workforce.

We did a panel, recently, talking about the future of work and its implications for those who are over 50 because automation, artificial intelligence is something else we worry about. Think about artificial intelligence when you're looking for a job. Can that screen you out before you ever get a human to see your resume? We worry about that a lot, and so we've been speaking at human resources conferences about the concerns about AI.

A couple of companies have come up with things. "I want to hire people who are like my most productive people now." Well, guess what? They're all white guys in hoodies. Well, that's not good. You don't want that in your workplace. We want to make sure that any AI systems that are put out there are not going to discriminate based on age, race, gender, or anything. That's a new issue that we need to be thinking about.

There was a whole thing on Facebook about people putting ads on Facebook for jobs. You can click on the "Why am I seeing this," and it would be because you're 18 to 34 years old. So someone 18 to 34 years old would see that job posting and someone's who's 50 would never even know that that job posting existed.

That's a real problem. We want to make sure that we're inclusive of anybody who wants to be in the workforce. And it's to an employer's detriment to not think more broadly about who's in their workforce and to ensure that they have a multitude of generations in the room.

When you think about products that are made, don't you want a variety of viewpoints about a product that you're pushing out so that you ensure that it's attractive to different cohorts of people? It just makes sense to us to ensure that the workplace is well represented by all of the multiple ethnicities and generations that make up this country.

Southwick: When we're talking about someone who's an older or experienced worker... This is going to make it sound like I'm worried that the clock is ticking on my career, here; but, at what age [should] I start to actually feel real pressure of discrimination? When do we see that kick in?

Weinstock: It depends on the industry. I read that at some of the Silicon Valley firms the median age is like 28 years old. I've heard in Silicon Valley sometimes at 35 you're considered old.

Brokamp: I read some of those articles, too.

Weinstock: So the Age Discrimination in Employment Act goes into effect when you turn 40, so 40 and above you're protected by the ADEA.

Southwick: Oh, wait! I'm a protected class now?

Weinstock: There you go! How about that?

Brokamp: Congratulations!

Weinstock: But I hate to tell you this. Women actually experience more age discrimination than men.

Southwick: Oh, I'm not surprised!

Weinstock: You'll probably not be even more surprised. African-American women experience the most age discrimination, and then Hispanic women, and then white women. But that's from our research. So yes...

Southwick: At any moment now. At any moment now...

Weinstock: I hope not...

Southwick: ... I'm going to start being... Well, the average age at The Motley Fool is low 30s. I don't know. Mid-30s, maybe, if I had to guess.

Brokamp: I don't know.

Southwick: Median age? Average age? So this is a pretty young office at times. I'm glad to know that I [do not] necessarily feel particularly discriminated against.

Brokamp: I hope not.

Southwick: I hope not, but it can be kind of a challenge. This is a very social office and depending on what stage in your life you're at, you're going to be more likely to go out for a beer afterwards. Or you're going to be more likely to need to get home and be with your kids. And so sometimes the discrimination isn't overt. It's not like someone is not actively inviting me out to a beer...

Weinstock: Right.

Southwick: ... but it's just that you're not going to think to ask the mom in the corner who you know has to jet anyway. When we think about getting older, it seems like it could be quite sinister. "Look at the old 'Bro' in the corner just being a crab." Which is true. He probably is.

Brokamp: I think you've made a few comments along those lines to me in the past.

Southwick: I've made a few comments on the show probably, I don't know, at least each of the last four episodes we've done. But yes, sometimes the discrimination or the way you get left out is not so overt. It's just we're not peers. We're not going to hang.

Brokamp: One of the things we talk to employers about is looking at their job-recruiting websites, because you can go on some of those websites and it's really interesting. Some of them are pictures, and no one looks like they're over 25 years old. Or they say, "We're a fun, energetic office." Well, I'm a mom with three kids. Fun and energetic sounds great, but I've got to go home at night and deal with three kids. I don't have time for fun and energetic.

But the message it sends is, "You don't want me. You only want a 25-year-old and that's it." So we've been talking to employers about that. "Look at the job recruitment site and see if you think it does do that sort of thing." And the other thing we see is employers who ask your graduation dates. Or ask your GPA. If you're 60 years old and you're applying for a job and someone asks for your college GPA, it says to that person, "You obviously don't want me, because who even thinks about your college GPA after you're 25 years old?"

So there's things like that that we keep, but the graduation date is a real problem. We've worked on trying to get legislation passed at the state level that would make it illegal to ask graduation dates or date of birth on a job application.

The other issue we've heard a lot about [is one] a lot of women's groups have been fighting -- we are in that fight, too -- is asking about previous salary, because it hurts women but it can also hurt older people. At AARP, when they hire you they don't ask for your previous salary. We have an HR department that decided that there's a market value for this job. We, as HR professionals should know what that market value is and we're going to offer you a salary based on that market and not based on what you were making before because that should have nothing to do with it.

Brokamp: I think most people know that when AARP began back in the 1950s, AARP stood for the American Association of Retired Persons and then in 1999 you went officially to AARP because it's not just for retired people.

Weinstock: Right.

Brokamp: I'm the retirement guy here at The Fool and I've talked before on this show that I'm not so sure that retirement is good for people. I'm just curious about your thoughts. Do you think retirement is a healthy way to live?

Weinstock: It depends on the person. I think some people, if you have means you can travel. You can volunteer. We think it's fantastic when people do a lot of volunteer work. And for some people it doesn't fulfill them. They like to continue to work. That's why we want to keep it so that people do what they want to do. They can choose the path that makes sense for them.

About one-third of our members are working. We'll go to HR conferences and people will say to us, "Why are you here? Aren't you about retired people?" And we're like, "Actually, one-third of our members are still working and that number is only going to grow." We want to be here because we want to fight for older workers and make sure they're getting a fair shake in the workplace. That's the gist of it. And people should be able to do what they want. If they want to work until they're 90, that's fantastic.

Brokamp: What about the implications for younger workers? Every once in a while I've heard people say, "Well, the good thing about retirement is it opens up roles in a company. If everyone keeps working then it will harder for people within the company to move up."

Weinstock: That's not true. That's called the "lump of labor," and it's a fallacy. The research shows that having older people that are active in the workforce and productive actually benefits all age groups and spurs the creation of more jobs. I mean, think about technology. Technology keeps changing. Yes, there are jobs that we're going to lose, but we're also going to gain new jobs, and so the idea that there's this "lump of labor" that's sitting with the older people and they're keeping all the younger workers from moving up is not true.

Brokamp: When people think about working longer, we've read several reports over the last year or two that have come out from various places saying there's a mismatch between how much people say they want to work. A certain percentage want to work beyond age 65; but, then when they get older, it turns out they are not able to for all kinds of reasons. For example, health might be one of them. It could be age discrimination. I think one report found that something like more than 50% of people who are over 50 or 55 end up losing their job involuntarily for one reason or another.

So how should people think of that? They want to work longer, but how do they prepare themselves for the possibility that they may not have quite the options they thought they were going to have?

Weinstock: I think the most important thing is to really be proactive in your career. Make yourself invaluable as much as you can. Build mentorships, both as a mentor yourself, but as a mentee. We know that multigenerational workforces are very powerful. Having teams that work together in multigenerational groups means more productivity. Absenteeism goes down.

BMW did this really interesting experiment back in 2007 where they actually picked people, based on their age, and had them work on a production line together. Productivity went up, absenteeism went down, and the error rate for that line moved to zero. And they compared it to where they had all just young and all just old and this was much better.

There is a lot of good stuff that comes out of building those multigenerational teams, so put yourself in there. Make sure that you're part of that. I think the health piece is really important. Manage your health. Eat right, exercise, get enough sleep, manage your stress. All those things that we should all be doing anyway, but it's also going to make you hopefully able to stay in the workforce for a longer time.

Brokamp: I imagine healthcare is a big issue for why people are staying in the workforce. We just had FoolFest, which is this annual gathering of our members, and we had this thing called eight minute meetings where everyone would sit around a table and have a conversation for eight minutes and then switch and everyone would have a different conversation.

I was leading one of those tables. I asked people what their plans for retirement are and if they're retired, how is it going? And I had a few people who have retired before age 65, so they're responsible for their own healthcare. And one guy said his premiums had gone up 20% a year and if he had known this was going to happen, he would have stayed in the workforce longer.

Weinstock: And that's one of the reasons why people come back into the workforce, sometimes. Or someone is working part-time and they feel they need to go full-time because a lot of times part-time jobs don't offer health benefits. So it's all in the mix. It's the pay. It's the retirement income. It's the health benefits. Working offers a lot of things to people.

So staying in the workforce and being able to stay in the workforce for as long as you want or need to [is] really our mantra. We want you to stay as long in the workforce as you want to. Do you want to stay until you're 90? Go at it. If you want to stay until you're 65, fine. So long as you can make ends meet, have at it. But we want to make sure that people have that ability to make the choices that they want to make.

Brokamp: We talked about the benefits of age diversity. Do you feel like that's a hard sell these days, or do most companies appreciate that?

Weinstock: It's a mixed bag. We have this thing called the Employer Pledge Program. The Employer Pledge Program now has over 1,200 companies that have signed up. It's a pledge that employers make that says, "I affirm the value of older workers. I affirm the value of a multigenerational workforce. I hire age-blind. I hire based on ability, regardless of age." This is not a heavy lift into the law, so we're not talking like they're doing something extraordinary, except for that they're doing it very publicly.

It's all on our website. If you go to AARP.org/EmployerPledge, you can see all of the 1,200 pledge signers. They're from all over the country. They're big employers and they're small employers. They're in all sorts of different industries. And so we work a lot with them to talk about the value of older workers and what that means. And a lot of these companies really do get it, because we have a labor shortage and they need to fill jobs.

This is an often, unfortunately, overlooked cohort of people that are great in the labor force and unfortunately there's this problem with age discrimination; but, if you get over that and you see the value of these workers, it can really work out beautifully. That's really what we're promoting.

And we also have a job board. We post jobs and Employer Pledge companies have a special seal on their posting that show someone who's looking for a job. "Oh, this is a company that's already said that they hire older workers. That they want older workers." And we hold online career fairs. Only the pledge signers can participate. In January we did a part-time online career fair. We had over 80,000 people sign up to register for the online career fair, and then we had about 54 employers. They can talk to each other virtually. People can upload their resume. We're going to do another one in September, so people can go to AARP.org/work and they can learn about all of these different things that we offer.

We also offer in 38 communities around the country in-person classes on how to find a job in the digital age. If you've been in the workforce for 20 years and you've never changed jobs, all of a sudden you're out of work and you're like, "I don't know what LinkedIn is." Well, it's a whole different world. So we offer an in-person class in 38 communities to teach you how to build a LinkedIn profile. How to look for a job online.

We also do a class called Sharpen Your Networking and Interviewing Skills for people to learn how to do an elevator pitch. Get confident about walking into an interview and thinking about getting ready. And then we also offer a bunch of stuff that are online classes that people can take at Learn.AARP.org. Tough interview questions. All sorts of things to think about when you're looking at getting a job.

We also have a resume advisor. I should mention that, too. If you go to AARP.org/resume-advisor, we'll do a free critique for you of your resume. There's packages that people can purchase at a discount if they're AARP members to have someone professionally rewrite your resume.

Brokamp: This has all been very fascinating! Thank you, Susan, for coming in!

Weinstock: Oh, thank you! This has been fun!

Southwick: Well, that's the show! It's edited unretiring-ly by Rick Engdahl. Our email is Answers@Fool.com. Bro is punching the mic for some reason. He's ready to get out of here. For Robert Brokamp, I'm Alison Southwick. Stay Foolish everybody!