Seniors, the fastest-growing segment of the workforce over the coming decade, are the group that’s most likely to feel discouraged when applying for jobs. They don’t have to be. They just need to look for jobs in better places.

Nine in 10 job seekers over the age of 65 have seen or personally suffered some sort of age discrimination. More than one third are re-entering the workforce after a long absence and are likely to feel that they don’t have the training and skills they need to break back into the working world, according to new research by the AARP Public Policy Institute. Although the improving economy has employed more seniors than at any time since the Great Recession, the over 65 age group also is far more likely than younger workers to spend months fruitlessly pounding the pavement to find work.

“We don’t know why so many seniors re-enter the workforce. Maybe they thought they were ready to retire, but didn’t enjoy retirement or couldn’t afford retirement,” says Jennifer Schramm, senior strategic policy advisor for the AARP Public Policy Institute. “But it’s one thing to be looking for a job when you currently hold a job or are recently unemployed. It’s another thing if you have been out of the labor market for a while.”

Giving up is not an option. About half of the senior workforce say they’re in the job market because they have to be for economic reasons, says Schramm.

Where can these older workers find good jobs?

The editors of evaluated more than 200 freelance jobs for their friendliness to seniors, taking a wide array of factors into account, including physical job demands, the need for technological training and the ability to use life skills to gain the necessary experience. Here are the nine most senior-friendly jobs and where to find them.

Animal care

If you’re already in the habit of watching your children’s pets when they’re away, you should know that plenty of people will pay you to do the same for them.

Rover lets you advertise your services as a pet- and/or house-sitter, allowing you to set your rates and availability and designate the type of pets you’re willing to care for. For instance, if you only want to care for small dogs – or cats or rabbits — you can specify that you only take animals that weigh 15 pounds or less. You set the rates, so you have no one to blame but yourself if you’re underpaid. However, the site does nip a 20% commission from your earnings.

Child care

Unlike watching your grandkids, which you probably do for free (and psychological rewards, of course), several sites, including Trusted and UrbanSitter, will help you find babysitting jobs that pay nicely — between $15 and $25 per hour. If you don’t want to spend that much time with somebody else’s grandkids, there are also a litany of online platforms –RideZum, HopSkipDrive and Kango –that pay $20 to $25 per hour to people willing to pick kids up from school and drive them home or to after-school activities. These sites want child care experience, but personal experience, like watching your own kids and grandkids counts. 


Have an athletic skill and think you can teach it to kids looking to improve their game? Consider signing up for CoachUp, an online platform that connects coaches with the kids who need them. You set the pay but the site takes a hefty commission to provide the marketing platform.


If you’re among the empty nesters who complain that you’ve forgotten how to cook for less than a crowd, you might want to check out EatWith and DishDivvy. DishDivvy involves making meals for pick-up. Eatwith, which operates all over the world, allows you to schedule dinner parties in your home. In both cases, you set the menu, the prices and your availability. The sites take a small portion of your revenue to pay the cost of marketing your services via their sites.

Serve on a focus group

Companies that make everything from toothpaste to cleaning supplies and cars sometimes try out the products on consumers who fit their target market., FieldWork and Consumer Opinion Services allow you to sign up for these opportunities that can pay anywhere from a few dollars to $250 for a few hours of work.

Mock Juror

Jury duty may pay just pennies per day, but lawyers who are looking for a good read on how reasonable people might rule on their case pay much better — $20 to $60 per hour — for “mock jurors.” Three companies – OnLineVerdict, JuryTest and eJury – will sign you up and send you cases when you fit the profile their attorneys need.


If you’ve developed any skill – from knitting to mastering WordPress or Excel spreadsheets – and think you could teach that skill to others, you can set up a course on Thinkific or Udemy. These sites allow you to easily video your lessons and sell them. However, each site has different shortcomings. Udemy will market your course, but may force you to sell it for a lower price (and pay them a higher commission) if the bulk of your customers come from them. Thinkific doesn’t get involved in your pricing, but it also doesn’t help you market the course. You’ve got to find the clients yourself.


Retired lawyer Ella Taylor says she earns between $15 and $27 per hour tutoring kids in English and to prepare for the law school admission exam through Varsity Tutors. However, other sites, including Wyzant, will also help you arrange both remote and in-person tutoring jobs in pretty much every topic you can imagine, including language, art and music.

Provide professional services

If you’re a retired accountant, attorney, marketing maven, or business consultant, you can find part-time professional work through several websites. FlexProfessionals specializes in high-end workers, while sites ranging from Upwork to Remote, find jobs in a wide array of work categories all the way up and down the corporate ladder.