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Don't let retiring employees leave without passing on their wealth of knowledge

by , 08 April 2013
'Your older, more experienced employees have a wealth of technical and process knowledge you'll be wasting if they leave your company without passing it on to the next generation of workers,' says Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service. To do this efficiently, you'll need to identify individual areas of expertise to ensure older employees pass on their specific, relevant knowledge before they retire. Here are six ways you can use to do this...

Never assume older employees in your company have nothing left to offer because they're close to retirement. In fact, the opposite is true.

The term 'older employee' refers to any employee approaching retirement and who's eligible for early retirement, basically any employee from the age of 55 years onwards.

'Your older employees, especially those who've worked for the company for a long time, will have a wealth of information about the development and growth of the company,' says the Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service.

So why not get them to share their historical knowledge of the company with new and existing employees?

This will give employees an insight into the business's history and make socialisation faster and longer-lasting.

Use these six ways as motivators to get older employees to share their expertise

  1. Have older employees act as mentors to other employees.
  2. 'Get them to make specific, topical presentations at training courses, induction sessions and project planning meetings,' advises the Loose Leaf.
  3. Include older employees in workgroups and committees.
  4. 'Second them to expert, in-house panels that produce manuals, technical reference documents and training courses,' advises the Loose Leaf.
  5. Allow them to proof-read technical specs and other relevant documents.
  6. Include them in problem-solving efforts.

Remember, your older employees are a valuable asset to your company. If you ensure they pass important information on before they leave, it can make the continuity of your business smoother and more effective

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Andre Eagar 2013-05-23 14:42:52

I cannot agree more. Unfortunately there is a trend to keep younger employees with far less experience in higher regard purely because of the positions that they occupy. Advice from the older employees are merely regarded as advice and is hardly implemented.
I have been involved in an arbitration where the older employee was dismissed for the acts of the younger, less experienced employees which out of ignorance resulted in fruitless and wasteful expenditures of more than R 1m.
My suggestion is that this topic and advice should not be underestimated.

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