Are Companies Firing Older Programmers to Replace them with Younger Programmers?

Younger programmer graduates can get paid a lot less than older, more experienced programmers, so is it worth it for a company to hire those who will save them money? It might make sense, but when that theory is broken down, it might not be a great idea after all; nor is it very common. This might be true in some companies, but it does not seem consistent with the majority. Money is a huge factor, but so is the experience you are getting.

Companies strive to save money in all areas they can, some compromise that with the employees they hire. Because it would make sense to have a worker that you can pay 3 times less than someone else. But what skills and expertise is that person bringing to the table? It falls into the lines of, ‘You get what you pay for.’ If you want to hire cheap, you might get cheaper results.

It some fields, experience plays a bigger role, especially when it is going to be bringing in money for the company. Experience will bring you more success more often that not. But with programming, the difficulty comes with the changing programs, software and progress constantly happening. If someone can’t keep up with that, or the things they once learned are no longer useful, is that still bringing in value to the company? That experience is altered if you’re in a field that is changing frequently. In those cases, either the older individual must be proactive in their personal training or willing to hire someone younger who has recently learned.  

Ultimately, a successful company will need to have a mix of both old and young. With each person bringing a different playing field to the table, they’re more set up for success. Experienced and young talent both have different priorities, time to devote, flexibility to new changes, and dedication. Although there’s a downside of having experienced programmers spending time and resources to train new hires, the company is still investing in the future.  

You just need to be irreplaceable. Be the top performer. Commit to learning and keeping up with the progress. If you are an older programmer, it does not appear that you are losing your job solely on age, but you need to commit to learning and discovering what’s new in the field. If you are a younger programmer, strive to have the top knowledge in the latest technologies and programs in order to be a new beneficial asset.