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Best Employers for Workers Over 50

See the latest winners of this AARP recognition program.

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Attract and retain top talent in a changing workforce.

Best Employers for Workers Over 50

2007 Winners

5. Stanley Consultants, Muscatine, Iowa
Consulting Services
1,018 employees; 30% 50+ (47% of managers, 44% of executives)

Recruiting Practices: 3
Training and Development: 4
Health Benefits: 5
Pension Plans: 2
Alternative Work Arrangements: 3

Stanley bends over backward to give its employees scheduling options, recently adding a new Personal Time Off program that combines vacation and sick leave into one account so employees can use their paid time off in the way that works best for them. Retirement is also flexible at Stanley—about 75 percent of retiring employees take advantage of the phased retirement program, which is tailored to each individual.

6. Lee Memorial Health System, Fort Myers, Fla.
Health Care
8,595 employees; 37% 50+ (48% of managers, 48% of executives)

Recruiting Practices: 5
Training and Development: 5
Health Benefits: 4
Pension Plans: 3
Alternative Work Arrangements: 5

Older workers scaling back their hours have a champion in Lee Memorial. While most companies require employees to work at least 20 hours a week to get benefits such as health insurance and tuition reimbursement, Lee Memorial provides these to employees who work as few as 16 hours a week.

7. Leesburg Regional Medical Center and The Villages Regional Hospital, Leesburg, Fla.
Health Care
2,658 employees; 38% 50+ (40% of managers, 56% of executives)

Recruiting Practices: 5
Training and Development: 5
Health Benefits: 3
Pension Plans: 3
Alternative Work Arrangements: 5

LRMC/TVRH offers its employees an impressive range of alternative work schedules. One example: The "summers off" program allows workers to spend their winters in the Sunshine State and head to cooler climes for the hottest months of the year—participating employees work for nine months and get three months off while retaining their benefits and job security.

8. George Mason University, Fairfax, Va.
Higher Education
5,760 employees; 48% 50+ (58% of managers, 63% of executives)

Recruiting Practices: 4
Training and Development: 3
Health Benefits: 5
Pension Plans: 5
Alternative Work Arrangements: 4

George Mason wins plaudits for its treatment of retirees, who are encouraged to continue their association with the university through its Retiree Connection program, which includes special events, workshops, and discounts. In addition, GMU retirees receive lifetime access to campus libraries and discounts to the Patriot Center (including basketball games) and the Center for the Arts.

9. Principal Financial Group, Des Moines, Iowa
Financial Services
13,100 employees; 19% 50+ (19% of managers, 37% of executives)

Recruiting Practices: 5
Training and Development: 5
Health Benefits: 5
Pension Plans: 4
Alternative Work Arrangements: 4

Principal prides itself on listening to its employees and making changes based on their suggestions. Case in point: After surveying employees, the company recently increased its 401(k) match. Another attention grabber: Principal has teamed up with Manpower for the Happy Returns Program, in which retirees are hired on a temporary basis—allowing them to continue working and earning while drawing on their pension.

10. Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Mass.
Health Care
19,480 employees; 27% 50+ (40% of managers, 68% of executives)

Recruiting Practices: 5
Training and Development: 5
Health Benefits: 5
Pension Plans: 5
Alternative Work Arrangements: 5

After debuting at number 39 on last year's list, Massachusetts General shot up an amazing 29 spots into the Top 10. One reason? The hospital's dedication to providing employees with opportunities to continue their education and grow professionally. Examples: It expanded its tuition reimbursement to include certificate programs, and it launched Steps to Success, a program to guide and support employees in career development and transitions.

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