Giving Long-Term Mature Workers A New Era Of Employment

A preconception exists that it becomes too late to change career paths. Swathes of self-doubt deter individuals, particularly those with decades spent in one industry, from seeking other avenues of employment. “But this is all I know,” they may say. AbilityMap, however, helped unearth a lifetime of skills and inherent capabilities to help long-term mature workers back to work (with some surprising results…).

The Situation

We had the opportunity to work alongside an organisation that had been charged with solving a state’s persistent problem of mature individuals without work. These individuals had been unemployed for at least six months or more. Further compounding their problems, in order to retain the benefits on which they survived they were required to attend twenty interviews per month. What must one hundred and twenty rejections do to a person’s self-confidence and sense of worth? Our founders, Mike and Kevin, were met with a challenge from the CEO of the organisation: “if you can prove to me you do what you say you do then we will do business.” Challenge accepted.

The Solution

AbilityMap proved that we are able to define the requirements needed for a role and evaluate an individual’s suitability based on the same framework and then compare the two. Approximately three hundred long-term unemployed mature individuals were asked to complete our Ability Imprint to determine their inherent capabilities as individuals. Using their results, individually and as a group, and the incredible job data we have accumulated we were able to identify fifteen potential industries. Our Human Capability Balance Sheet then allowed us to find three suitable roles for each individual. In many cases, working in those industries had not even crossed their minds.

The SUccess

One feel-good story that we’re particularly proud of is of a lady that had worked in a manufacturing packaging environment for most of her life. However, she kept being fired; she clearly wasn’t suited to the role. Her Imprint showed an inherent capability around understanding the needs of others: listening, communicating, evaluating risk and managing safety. Although she had never considered it, our tool suggested a role in the paramedical industry – perhaps aged care – would suit her perfectly. Using the tool and support of her coaches she took an interview and was given a role in aged care. We’re incredibly pleased to say she’s loving her new job. We had a similar experience with another individual from a manufacturing packaging background that found a job in retail. He was a ‘people person’ but had not been utilising those inherent capabilities
“Although she had never considered it, our tool suggested a role in the paramedical industry – perhaps aged care – would suit her perfectly.”


Individuals will not always fulfill roles that suit their capabilities; in many cases a job is just that, a job. The implications of that are both individualistic and organisational. Retention is key within organisations and is fundamentally based on a person’s ability to enjoy, grow and succeed within a role. We often look at the idea of mobility within a corporate environment. If you could quantitatively measure an employee’s capabilities and the requirements of roles within the company would they be fulfilling the same role? AbilityMap allows you to find out.