There are many reasons why seniors choose to work past retirement age. For some, the process is enjoyable and more attractive than retiring. Others may find that they need to work for financial reasons. Working in older age does come with some advantages and disadvantages, as we’ve discussed previously.
For those that are going to work, what are the best jobs for seniors?
After all, some positions are better suited for seniors than others. For example, physically intensive jobs are often a poor match, especially if you’ve had this type of role for many years already.
At the same time, older workers are more common in some industries than in others.
This post takes a look at 10 of the best jobs for seniors. To do this, we used the current labor force statistics as a starting point and looked at the jobs and industries that hired a greater percentage of seniors and/or had a higher median age.
We also applied logic and additional research to these conclusions. This was done so that the final list focuses on jobs that are relevant to most seniors.
After all, some career paths have more seniors simply because of the skill and seniority involved in the role (such as judges and magistrates). Such positions aren’t easily accessible and require a long career path to get to that point.
The final results are below (in no particular order), along with additional information.
#1 Bus Drivers
For seniors who can still drive safely, being a bus driver is an appealing job. The role doesn’t require an extensive skill set – and you’ll already have most of the skills that you need.
The average salary varies dramatically depending on the location and also the employer.
The nature of this role means you don’t need an extensive history as a bus driver, nor a specific educational background. However, some training will be needed, along with certification requirements. The job also provides many chances for social contact, which is an appealing aspect on its own.
Even so, there are some negative aspects. People on the bus will sometimes be rude and may cause issues. The job itself can also become monotonous and stressful.
Whether the position is a good choice will ultimately depend on your skills and interests. There are also many variations to this role.
The most obvious example is a bus driver for the city, as part of a bus route. But, many other places also hire bus drivers. The latter roles may be less stressful and could involve less commitment as well.
For example, senior centers often need some bus drivers, which would offer the chance to interact with people your own age as well.
#2 Other Driving Roles
Similar advantages also apply to other driving roles. For example, you could also be a taxi driver or a chauffeur. You might even work for a company that provides transport to seniors.
This type of role is often less intensive than bus driving, as you are working with fewer customers at a time. You don’t need as many skills either, as you’ll often be driving a van or a car, not a bus.
Some seniors even work for Uber or similar opportunities. Roles like that are easier to get, although they are often more stressful and may not pay as well.
As always, it’s important to weigh up the risks and the benefits carefully. But this can be an interesting job direction, especially if you enjoy driving anyway.
#3 Proofreaders, Editors, Copy Markers etc.
Many proofreading and editing jobs are low intensity, making them a good fit for seniors. Once again, you may already have most of the skills that you need.
Such positions work especially well for people who already have a background in writing or editing to some degree. They can also be a good fit for people within an industry.
For example, a related role is a transcriptionist, such as a medical transcriptionist. People with a background in the medical industry will have an advantage because they are familiar with many of the concepts and the language. Such a role can be a good way to stay active and engaged in an industry.
Because this is a general field, the roles vary dramatically.
Some organizations will offer formal positions, while others may have these roles as part of more general roles, such as a secretary or a personal assistant. You may also be able to find casual positions with some searching.
You can also look for companies that specialize in this area, such as those that provide proofreading and editing services. Companies that offer tutoring services are another direction to consider.
For those who are computer and internet savvy, there are countless online jobs in this field. However, it’s important to be very careful – as many online employers take advantage of their workers and pay little for the work that you do.
#4 Tutor or Teaching Assistant
There are many roles in this field, depending on your background and education level. However, making money by teaching others is a viable approach and can be enjoyable for many seniors. The role offers a way to impart knowledge to the next generation and also has a strong social component.
For formal positions, like teacher aide or teaching assistant, you may need some background in the field and formal education. However, the role is well suited for people who were teachers and are looking for something less intensive.
On the other hand, many tutoring positions require much less background and can be easier to get involved in. Agencies that offer after-school programs or tutoring services can be good places to start.
Being a librarian is a common choice for seniors and can work particularly well. The role is relatively low in intensity and also gives the chance for social contact.
It can be a particularly good choice for seniors who love to read or who are passionate about books.
This is also a role where age matters less. In fact, libraries have historically hired older staff than many other locations.
Tailors are involved in altering and repairing clothing, with the goal of making it fit better. Clothing stores, dry cleaning stores, and laundry companies will often hire for this role, as will some independent clothing alteration companies.
Once again, this is a job that you may already have the skills for.
Tailoring is also a dying art, as the younger generations often aren’t taught it as part of their education. For this reason alone, age can be an advantage in this field.
You’re not limited to formal employment either. Tailoring can also be a way to make some money on the side, especially once friends or family know your skills.
#7 Travel Agents
This is another field that hires more seniors than the average. It is also a good fit, as the role isn’t too intense and your experiences may be beneficial.
The main place to find positions in this field would be through travel agencies. However, with the prevalence of online alternatives – there are fewer options nowadays. So, if you do find them, positions in this field are worth pursuing.
#8 Retail Sales
Retail is a very general field and refers to any role where you are selling products. This could include working at places like Best Buy or Kroger, along with more specialized roles.
In some cases, the focus is heavily on sales, where you may earn a commission based on your success. Other times, the emphasis is on customer service and support.
This type of position isn’t specifically targeted at seniors – and seniors will often be underrepresented. However, it can still be a good fit for seniors because the roles are often entry-level. This gives you the chance to get involved even if you have no background in the field. Companies also tend to need many employees, so they may be more likely to give a senior a chance.
However, if you consider this direction, make sure you research first. Many retail roles will have additional requirements, such as managing stock. They can also be physically intensive, requiring you to be on your feet for hours at a time.
Make sure you know what will be expected of you in any role and make sure that those goals are realistic for you.
#9 Direct Sales
Direct sales positions are often promoted as a good way to earn money independently, for any age group. This could be a formal job from a company and those do still exist.
There are also many network marketing companies that allow you to make money by promoting products (like Avon). If you choose the company well and have a good audience, this can be a good approach for some extra money.
However, make your decisions carefully. Many of these companies have hidden costs and success is more difficult than it first seems.
#10 Religious Workers
Religious positions are often voluntary but that’s not always the case. Instead, many churches do have paid roles. These can include administration positions, as well as being involved in organization or in overseeing a particular program.
This type of role can work well for seniors and expectations tend to be realistic. Such positions can also be interesting and enjoyable, especially for anyone with a faith-based background.
Your age may even be an advantage here, as older people tend to inspire trust and are often viewed as sources of wisdom in the church environment.
Working as a Senior
Of course, these jobs are just the tip of the iceberg. There are many other roles that seniors can fill. The best choice will always vary based on your experience, work history, and skills. Even so, these are all good places to get started and can be a good fit for many seniors.
With that in mind, what have I missed?
What other positions are well-suited for seniors? Please let me know your thoughts in the comments below.