6 November 2023
More and more retired stay-on workers employed through skills-based matching with AI
Can we ease labour market tightness with enthusiastic stay-on workers? It turns out that the skills and commitment of 67-year-olds on certain projects are very welcome for employers. Doorwerker (‘Stay-on worker’ in Dutch) is an employment agency for retirees. The team uses AI to predict skills for all candidates and match them to work that fits these skills. According to the motivated team, unlocking this capability is an important factor for organisations in their search for scarce staff. And besides, it makes stay-on workers feel great to contribute socially again.
A financial services firm from Utrecht had been looking for a part-time accountant for some time. Kees (69) has been retired for two years and worked in financial administration his whole career. They both applied to Doorwerker.nl (‘Stay-on worker.nl’), the employment agency for retired workers. Now, Kees super-enthusiastically works 8 hours a week for his new client; whom he is helping out immensely.
Kees isn’t the only one motivated to continue working after age 67. A sizeable proportion of the 3.5 million Dutch pensioners would like to be useful and earn something on the side. At the same time, more and more clients are looking at new target groups as the labour market tightens. Doorwerker.nl hired over 400 retirees at more than 75 clients in the first six months of 2023. Operational manager Daan van Engers expects to double these numbers next year. He recently launched a campaign to recruit more retirees.
In addition to Daan, the Doorwerker team consists of Christa, Lennart and Carola. They help retirees (if needed) to create a profile with their preferences, skills, experience and ambitions. The way Doorwerker.nl creates successful matches is unique. To do this, the team uses 8vance’s skills-based matching software. Algorithms predict the skills for each candidate. At the same time, the skills needed in jobs are ‘calculated’. Through statistical analysis of more than 80 million anonymous profiles and 25 million vacancies, the software can predict skills and successful matches at lightning speed. AI sorts the matches and the team can present suitable candidates to employers at high speed.
Christa says: “It’s always great to match someone with a nice side job. Here, we can start a search from the candidate profile, or we search for a client in our database of now 1,400 actively registered stay-on workers. If a candidate is of interest to more than one client, they can choose for themselves.”
Lennart is delighted with 8vance’s user-friendly matching software: “The application suggests amazingly good matches. We can email or Whatsapp and call suitable people directly from the Workflow Management System. All communication is stored. The other day I placed someone as a hostess at the Amsterdam Royal Palace, who had worked for the Municipality of Amsterdam in her career. This turned out to be a golden match, as she had been chosen to attend the wedding between Willem Alexander and Máxima here in 2002 and had fond memories of the place.”
Carola also enjoys her work. “A large insurance agency was looking for someone on the helpdesk. Customers were finding it difficult to enter information into the portal. A retired gentleman with the right background to help those customers is now helping them. We have such nice and highly motivated candidates. Sometimes it really is a party.” She cites another example: “For Rotterdam The Hague Airport, we were looking for people who wanted to do a valet parking shift at 5 o’clock in the morning. We thought that would be difficult, but it turned out to be no problem. Pensioners are happy to assist, even early in the morning.”
All team members are convinced they are on the eve of tremendous growth. There are more and more retirees, who would like and are able to continue working after retirement. Or in addition to their state pension benefits, would like to earn supplementary income. There is also a mindset shift among employers, who will have to think about other options. We are not far from a future where thousands of stay-on workers and employers will find suitable matches independently through our platform. And that it will be possible for everyone who wants to do so to continue doing meaningful work during retirement age, or just to earn some nice extra money.