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Best Employers for Workers Over 50

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Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina

Winner: 2009 Best Employers for Workers Over 50

Wellness-related benefits are available to all employees and include flu shots, health screenings, health-risk appraisals, a smoking-cessation program, fitness facility discounts, exercise programs, a weight-loss program, and stress-management training. The company also has a nurse practitioner on-site. Over the past 12 months, 93 percent of all employees have used at least one of the wellness-related benefits.

The company also assists full- and part-time employees who work at least 20 hours per week with referral services for child care, grandchild care, and eldercare and has backup care for child or grandchild care.

Blue Cross Blue Shield N.C. partners with LifeCare to give employees resources for handling adult care and aging, finance, legal issues, daily needs, and emotional health.

Benefits and Alternative-Work Arrangements: Full- and part-time employees who work 20 hours per week or more are able to work flexible or compressed-work schedules, to participate in job sharing, or to telecommute. Full-time employees have the opportunity to move to part-time work on either a permanent or temporary basis. Employees approaching retirement may be able to shift roles or decrease their work hours, depending on business needs. 

Opportunities for Retirees: Blue Cross Blue Shield N.C. currently has 650 retirees. The company stays connected with them through invitations to events or celebrations, providing ongoing access to retirement-planning workshops and information, and by formally acknowledging employees when they retire. The company's benefits staff is available to answer retirees' questions.

The company maintains a roster of retirees who are available to work in temporary assignments and in full- and part-time positions. The company encourages retiring employees and retirees to keep it advised of when and whether they would like to return to as employees.

Age of Workforce: Twenty-two percent of all the company's employees are age 50+, with an average tenure of 12 years.

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