What is the situation ?
If they are less unemployed than the general population, seniors have more difficulty finding a job. And with an employment rate of 55-64 year olds of 56%, France is below the European average (60,5%).
The executive expects the reform to increase the employment rate of the over 60s by 2 points from 2025 and 6 points from 2030.
But according to a 2018 report by France Strategy, if the rules (legal retirement age and contribution period) have "a strong impact" on the employment of seniors, it is "far from being mechanical". Raising the legal age from 60 to 62 in 2010 thus resulted "in an increase in employment for only half of the people concerned", the others being divided between inactivity (including a substantial proportion of invalidity or long illness) and unemployment.
A limited senior index
The government hopes to change the behavior of companies with a "senior index" like that for gender equality. It will be compulsory from this year for companies with more than 1.000 employees, a threshold lowered to 300 employees in 2024. Failure to publish it will be punishable by penalties of up to 1% of turnover.
The list of indicators and their calculation method will be fixed by decree, after consultation with the social partners.
If, after three years, a deterioration in the indicators is observed, the employer will have to enter into negotiations. Failing agreement, he will have to draw up an action plan.
The National Association of HRDs (ANDRH) suggests indicators focused on the over 55s, measuring employment, training and mobility rates and the development of work organization.
“It is a question of measuring the positive policies put in place. We are not very favorable to punitive indexes because it does not change anything”, explains its vice-president Benoît Serre.
On the employers' side, the Medef as the CPME have shown their hostility towards the index. "Companies have to make an effort but the index does not work!" said Geoffroy Roux de Bézieux.
The unions believe that this index is not restrictive enough.
The measure risks being challenged to the Constitutional Council because the provisions of the text are supposed to have an impact on the finances recorded by the Social Security 2023 budget, which in this case is uncertain. The Council of State has alerted the government to this effect.
But the index could return in the next full employment bill.
An experienced senior CDI
A new type of CDI will be created on an experimental basis to facilitate the hiring of long-term job seekers over 60, exempt from family contributions.
But this experiment, valid for three years, will only start if there is an agreement between the social partners at the interprofessional level by September 1st. Otherwise, the creation of this contract is referred to a branch agreement.
This provision had been introduced by the senatorial right but the majority, where some pointed to a "false good idea", obtained to greatly reduce its scope because of its cost.
Due to its late arrival in the discussion, this provision could not be examined by the Council of State. Its constitutionality is therefore not guaranteed.
The text takes up the main demand of the ANDRH, namely that the employer can terminate this contract when the employee has reached his full rate for retirement, therefore without going until the age of 70. This was "a brake on hiring", according to Benoît Serre. On the other hand, he would have liked this CDI to apply from the age of 55.
On the side of senior job seekers, according to a survey by the association Solidarité Nouvelles Facing Unemployment published on Thursday, 84% affirm the need for intervention by the public authorities.
This CDI leaves union officials skeptical. For Laurent Berger (CFDT) in particular, "there will be a windfall effect, there will be nothing else".