certified age friendly service program
Certified Age Friendly Service™ Program
RetirementJobs.com’s Certified Age Friendly Service™ program identifies and recognizes trustworthy organizations committed to serving the unique needs of individuals over age 50. Certification means that the business's products or services have been evaluated and endorsed as age friendly by RetirementJobs.com. The CAFS program acts as a complement to RetirementJobs.com’s flagship age friendly employer certification system, which is popular among job seekers and has been recognized by AARP and the U.S. Senate Aging Committee.
This special seal means RetirementJobs.com has determined— following a comprehensive, in-depth analysis based on externally-available data and interviews with authorized organization representatives— that the organization meets RetirementJobs.com Age Friendly Certification Standards. Meeting these Certification Standards specifically includes the business providing a commitment to researching and developing features and benefits particularly suited to the needs of older individuals. The organization has agreed to adhere to age friendly employment standards, which means it will internally investigate complaints regarding age discrimination by its customers or employees. Certified Age Friendly Services pay a fee for annual reviews & monitoring, and for support of RetirementJobs.com’s extensive advocacy outreach on behalf of people over age 50. Businesses are under no obligation to seek Certification. Similarly, not all organizations that apply for certification, earn it. However, in these cases, RetirementJobs will identify key weaknesses in the organization’s program so that they may improve those deficiencies and reapply at a future time.
The purpose of the Age Friendly Employer Certification program is to assist age 50+ individuals by identifying those organizations, products and services authentically committed to serving them. It seeks to recognize the brand names of legitimate markers who serve the age 50+ demographic free of predatory practices, which is a major concern to people over 50.
RetirementJobs.com's research and evaluation of the business procedures and programs of recognized Age Friendly services yields a model of proven best practice standards. This model is the basis of the Certification evaluation program. The eight categories of best practices standards are:
1. Management Commitment to Customers Over Age 50
2. Culture and Customer Relations
3. Business Stability
4. Customer Retention
5. Customer Marketing & Advertising
6. Customer Feedback
7. Product and Service Appropriateness for Mature Customers
8. External Review of Business Practices and Brand Reputation
Within each standard category are several established prominent best practice policies, practices and programs that comprise the framework of the RetirementJobs.com’s Certification evaluation process.
The certification granted by RetirementJobs.com is that of Certified Age Friendly Service. This designation is issued following successful completion of the Certification evaluation by RetirementJobs.com staff. Certified services are listed on the RetirementJobs.com website and in publicity material. The Certification seal is inserted on Certified Age Friendly Service profiles on RetirementJobs.com’s website. Further, certified service organizations are encouraged to place the seal on their own sites and in appropriate marketing collateral.
Any service made available to older individuals is eligible to apply to become a Certified Age Friendly Service.
Certification Evaluation Process
Certification evaluations are performed exclusively by RetirementJobs.com Research & Certification staff members who are highly experienced research professionals, particularly focused in the area of serving the age 50+ demographic. All data provided by the organization as part of the Certification evaluation process is entirely confidential and never reported.
The evaluation's primary steps are:
- Application or Letter of Interest – Employers may submit an evaluation application or letter of interest. Employers publishing advertisements on RetirementJobs.com are contacted automatically by RetirementJobs.com’s staff.
- Process Review Discussion – A RetirementJobs.com staff member will contact the employer to explain the Certification program and the entire evaluation process.
- Evaluation Questionnaire – Participating employers may complete a confidential questionnaire of recruiting and employment policies, practices and programs. This questionnaire encompasses the eight categories of known best practices related to age friendly services.
- Program Review – The organization’s questionnaire submission is reviewed by RetirementJobs.com and follow up discussions are held as appropriate (on-site, via phone or e-mail) to ensure accuracy and validity. Additional material or information may be requested of the company.
- Related Recognition – Other public recognition as an age friendly service is considered favorably in the evaluation process.
- Renewal and Recertification – Recertification is completed every twelve months. In this way, services seeking to maintain the currency of their certification are assured of a scheduled review.
The Certified Age Friendly Service screening and decision process has been examined by members of RetirementJobs.com's independent Board of Advisors, comprised of leading academics and professionals, and has been determined to fairly and accurately assess appropriate “best practices” for individuals age 50 and older. The Certified Age Friendly Service factors and process will evolve and be updated continuously.