L.L.Bean Named One of AARP's Best Employers for Workers over 50
FREEPORT, ME, August 30, 2006 - It was announced today that L.L.Bean is one of 50 employers around the country named by AARP as one of the Best Employers for Workers over 50. The award, now in its sixth year, was established by AARP to honor employers showing a commitment to an aging workforce.
AARP invites employers to apply for the designation by submitting an application describing their exemplary practices toward workers age 50 and over.
Key areas of consideration are: recruiting practices; opportunities for training, education and career development; workplace accommodations; alternative work options, such as flexible scheduling, job sharing, and phased retirement; employee health and pension benefits; retiree benefits and age diversity of the workforce.
With 36% of its employees age 50 or over, L.L.Bean highly values the contributions of its older workers and the role people of retirement age play in helping the company meet its unique seasonal employment needs. Fifteen percent of the company's new hires over the last 12 months have been over the age of 50, and L.L.Bean retirees are always encouraged to work at the company on a seasonal basis.
"Dynamic employers recognize the importance of creating a mutually beneficial work environment," said Jud Dolphin, AARP Maine State Director. "L.L.Bean is to be congratulated for participating in AARP's Best Employers search and for undergoing a tough evaluation process."
Mr. Dolphin added that while many firms value 50+ workers for their experience, motivation and strong engagement, other employers need to recognize the advantages that those workers bring to the table. "This is particularly important for employers in Maine, recognized now as being the oldest state in the nation. Employers who see the benefits of hiring and retaining their older workers will be better positioned for a positive economic future," Mr. Dolphin said.
Chris McCormick, CEO of L.L.Bean, agrees with this concept. "At L.L.Bean, we've long valued the experience, commitment and contributions of mature workers. These employees are sought out and welcomed into our culture because they bring to their jobs an inherent appreciation of our company's values, thus acting as superior role models for colleagues of all ages. A walk through any of our worksites – especially during our peak holiday season – demonstrates the vital role mature workers play in our success."
Across the country, 60 percent of the winners in the search come from the healthcare sector, including hospitals, and 64 percent are either private, nonprofit or not-for-profit organizations.
L.L.Bean and the other awardees will be honored at a dinner in Chicago on September 21. In connection with the event, AARP will convene a working conference of employers the next day to identify challenges – and solutions – associated with the aging of the workforce. AARP The Magazine will feature the Best Employers winners in its November-December issue.
To learn more about AARP's work on 50+ workers, visit the AARP Employer Resource Center at www.aarp.org/employerresourcecenter.
AARP is a nonprofit, nonpartisan membership organization that helps people 50+ have independence, choice and control in ways that are beneficial and affordable to them and society as a whole. We produce AARP The Magazine, published bimonthly; AARP Bulletin, our monthly newspaper; AARP Segunda Juventud, our bimonthly magazine in Spanish and English; NRTA Live & Learn, our quarterly newsletter for 50+ educators; and our Web site, AARP.org. AARP Foundation is an affiliated charity that provides security, protection, and empowerment to older persons in need with support from thousands of volunteers, donors and sponsors. We have staffed offices in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.