A lot of people believe that once you retire, employment opportunities disappear and there’s no chance of re-entering the job market.
But that couldn’t be further from the truth. According to Reuters, by 2024, one in four workers will be older than 55.
Not to mention, many employers are actively looking to hire seniors because of the maturity and strong ethics they’re able to bring to a workplace - qualities that younger people sometimes lack.
So, whether you’re a senior who wants to earn extra money, stay active, meet people, or explore a new career path, there’s an abundance of job options to choose from.
Our guide explores the best jobs for seniors, divided by category.
- Part-Time & Flexible Jobs for Seniors
- Jobs for Seniors with Disabilities
- Work From Home & Telecommute Jobs for Seniors
- Fun & Low-Responsibility Jobs for Seniors
- Best Jobs for Seniors with a Career
- Volunteer Jobs for Seniors
- Job-Hunting for Seniors: What to Do & What to Expect
10 Part-Time & Flexible Jobs for Seniors
As a senior in your retirement years, you might not be too eager to restart a 40-plus-hour weekly grind. Instead, you might want something flexible or temporary.
Here are our top 10 picks of part-time jobs for seniors:
1. Security guard
You might be thinking: “a security guard, during my retirement years? That can’t be right!”
Well, we’re not talking about the type of guards that protect government officials and carry weapons on the job.
You can become a mall security officer, parking guard, or residential guard. For these positions, your main duty is to maintain order, monitor alarms, and cameras, deny or accept access to vehicles, open and close gates, and other behind-the-desk tasks.
Salary: The average base pay for a security guard is $30,264 a year.
2. Youth care specialist
If you’re patient, tolerant, compassionate, and want to help people, you can provide support to young people by becoming a youth care specialist. Specifically, as a youth care specialist, you have to maintain a safe environment for children who are away from their families (for various reasons) so they feel safe, cared for, and nurtured.
Salary: An average of $38,651 a year.
3. Retail worker
This is one of the most popular part-time jobs for seniors. And it’s easy to see why: the work offers flexible hours, opportunities to socialize and interact with customers, potential store discounts, and healthcare coverage (if you work with big corporations).
Salary: Retail workers make $11 an hour, or $23,601 a year.
4. Event attendant
Are your greatest strengths organizing and planning? Then, becoming an event attendant could be your calling.
Event attendants go to different occasions (weddings, birthdays), and deal with responsibilities such as venue preparation, setting up chairs and stages for events, and operating cash registers. The job is overall easy, requires little to no training, and involves part-time working hours.
Salary: Event attendants make an average of $29,704 a year.
A greeter works in stores, restaurants, hotels, banks, and other types of facilities. They greet people coming in with a friendly hello, answer questions, look out for shoplifters, and do some basic cleaning.
So, if you’ve got good communication skills and want to work with people, the position could be a great job opportunity.
Salary: Average wages vary from $10 to $12 an hour, depending on the specific facility you decide to work in.
Have a camera at home and an eye for photography? That’s basically all it takes to become a photographer. You can use some of your free time to take pictures of weddings, restaurants, sports, and people for an hourly rate.
Salary: On average, photographers make $21 an hour, but for this position, you’re free to pick and choose whatever rate you prefer (and your customers agree to).
7. Uber/Lyft Driver
Another flexible part-time gig you can try as a senior is Uber or Lyft driving. You’ll be able to set your own work schedules and drive from the comfort of your car.
Salary: As an uber driver, you can make an average of $39,329 a year.
Translation services are needed everywhere: government offices, social service agencies, customer service centers, e-commerce, and the entertainment industry. So, if you’re a bilingual or multilingual senior, all you need is to get certified (you can get certification from the American Translators Association) to start working as a professional translator.
Salary: Translators earn an average of $29 an hour, or $60,118 a year.
Do you love books and helping people? What better place to work in than a library?
As a librarian, you will collect, organize and catalog books, conduct regular auditing, and help people find books and navigate the library. A big plus: working conditions allow you to work in a relaxing and cool environment, as well as read your favorite books in your free time.
Salary: An average of $51,057 a year
10. Home care provider
A home care provider does housekeeping and laundry services, shops for groceries, prepares meals and snacks, and runs errands. It’s a great way to earn some extra money and stay active during your retirement years.
Salary: An average of $12 per hour, or $24,449 a year.
5 Jobs for Seniors with Disabilities
As a senior with a disability, you may be hesitant to look for work. In today’s job market, however, a disability doesn’t have to stand in the way of getting the job of your dreams.
Here’s a list of the best careers to choose from, as a senior with a disability:
1. Human Resources Assistant
A human resource assistant recruits, hires, and trains both new and existing employees. To become one, you need a Bachelor's degree in human resources, business, or a related field. Because it’s an office job, the position is great for seniors with a physical disability which limits mobility.
Salary: HR assistants make an average of $40,609 a year.
If you’re updating your resume and need some inspiration, check out our office assistant resume guide for 2023.
2. Data entry
Data entry jobs are great if you’re a senior with a physical impairment because you’re able to work remotely and still make good money. The job includes the use of computers and data processing programs to enter information into a database.
Salary: The national average salary for data entry is $32,287 a year.
Being a telemarketer, or a telesales representative means calling customers to promote and/or sell a product. This job position is great if you have good phone etiquette, are skilled at selling and can work in a high-stress environment. And since the work is done behind a computer screen, it’s suitable for you if you’re a retiree with a physical disability.
Salary: Telemarketers make an average of $29,501 a year.
4. Food preparation/Chef
Do you have a passion for cooking? Do friends and family always grab a second serving from the meals you prepare? Then why not use your skills to make people happy AND earn some money along the way?
There’s plenty of establishments where you can prepare food in restaurants, schools, hospitals, and hotels. And the job is suitable in case you’re a senior with a speech impairment, or an intellectual disability.
Salary: An average of $24,826 a year.
The job of a proofreader involves detecting, highlighting, and correcting any typos or grammatical errors in manuscripts. It also involves ensuring that page numbers, headings, and captions are accurate. It’s a great option if you’re detail-oriented and enjoy writing and editing during your retiree years. And since being a proofreader doesn’t require that you speak or move around too much, it’s a suitable option if you have a physical or speech impairment.
Salary: Proofreaders earn around $42,895 a year.
If you want to know more about the job search process and potential careers to follow as a person with a disability, we’ve got a full disability career guide you can check out.
5 Work From Home & Telecommute Jobs for Seniors
Looking to work from the comfort of your home?
Here are some of our top job options:
1. Virtual assistant
Virtual assistants have similar duties to administrative assistants. However, they do it all from home. As such, this is a wonderful opportunity for seniors looking to work remotely. The job also allows you to travel, as it can be done from anywhere with an internet connection.
Salary: Being a virtual assistant comes with high pay that averages to $32 an hour, or $67,115 a year.
Do you have comprehensive knowledge of the English language and pay great attention to detail? Then, working as an editor might just be your thing. The job requires you to revise material before it’s published in books, newspapers, or online websites.
Salary: The average salary of an editor amounts to $54,292 a year.
3. Content Writer
Is there a certain topic or field you’re extremely knowledgeable in? Then, share that knowledge with the world and get paid for it by becoming a writer. You can either work for a specific company that’s looking for a blogger with your skills and knowledge or optimize your LinkedIn profile and online presence and take in work as a freelancer.
Salary: Content writers make an average of $50,109 a year, but rates highly vary depending on where you’re located and the client you’re working for.
4. Phone survey conductor
Phone survey conductors ask required survey questions to respondents and then collect and report their answers to a superior. Hence, the profession requires two main skills: active listening and communication. If you think this position fits you, then being a phone survey conductor could be your calling.
Salary: The average base pay is $36,374 a year.
A bookkeeper keeps a record of a business’s cash transactions in financial reports and statements. To be able to do the job, however, you’ll need to have a good understanding of accounting basics, as well as be able to work with numbers and paperwork. On the upside, most of the work is done through software, so you can work remotely during your own hours for a high paycheck.
Salary: Bookkeepers make an average of $18 an hour.
5 Fun & Low-Responsibility Jobs for Seniors
Many seniors look for jobs that are low-stress. After all, what’s the point of working post-retirement if you’re gonna work just as hard as you did in your thirties and with just as many responsibilities?
Here’s a list of our favorite fun & low-responsibility job positions for seniors:
1. Dog walking/pet sitting
Care for a dog and you’ve got yourself a permanent job!
Pet sitting and dog walking are two of the most relaxing, stress-free jobs out there. And the best part is, you can get a bit of exercise yourself while making money and staying busy.
Salary: The average hourly wage is $14 an hour, which amounts to $29,921 a year.
If you like plants and nature, you can turn your passion into profit by working as a gardener. You can work for neighbors who need help or become part of a landscaping company.
Salary: On average, gardeners get paid $15 an hour, or $31,121 a year.
3. Tour guide
If you live in an area full of tourists, working as a tour guide can be a great low-stress job opportunity. You usually have to converse and lead a relaxed group of people who are looking to have fun, while also getting some walking exercise.
Salary: Tour guides make an average of $29,843 a year.
4. Childcare worker
While taking care of a child is a big responsibility, if you’re good with kids and have experience from raising your own then being a childcare worker can add meaning and satisfaction to your life as a senior. You can find work in any daycare or childcare center, or as a private nanny to friends, neighbors, and family.
Salary: The national average salary for being a childcare worker is $28,474 a year.
5. Food delivery driver
A food delivery driver spends their time picking out food from local restaurants and delivering it to people’s homes from the comfort of their own car. The job’s very low in responsibility and if you enjoy car rides and driving, it can also be extra fun to do.
Salary: The average salary is $29,845 a year, but top earners make up to $45,500.
5 Best Jobs for Seniors with a Career
Do you want to continue working in your professional field without having to commit to a full-time job?
Then, here’s a list of potential job opportunities you can try out:
If you’re a baby boomer with advanced degrees and years of work experience, you could find plenty of part-time tutoring jobs at a university, community college, or a professional school. Or, if you’re looking for more flexibility, you could work as a private tutor and set your own work hours and rates.
Salary: The average base pay for a university tutor is $49,919 a year.
Another great way you can stay involved in your prior career and make a difference in the community is by getting into second career teaching. Lots of high schools, community colleges, and community centers look to hire assistant teachers that can teach students subjects related to professional development or general interest.
When you have a lot of work experience under your belt, you have the advantage of becoming a consultant. You know what you’re doing and can guide others, which is exactly what companies look for in a consultant. If you’ve decided this is the best senior job for you, you can go learn how to prepare your resume through our consultant resume guide.
4. Tax Preparer
If you have an accounting background and want to only work during the first half of the year, then becoming a tax preparer could be for you. As a tax preparer, you’ll usually have to work long hours through tax season, which ends on April 15. Then, for the remaining time of the year, your schedule clears up.
Salary: The average base pay for a tax preparer is $33,141 a year.
Secretaries answer phone calls, respond to emails, arrange meetings, prepare reports, and other similar office duties.
So, if you’re someone with good verbal and written communication skills, and customer service abilities, you can apply to be a secretary in any of the following settings: school, hospital, and government, legal, or medical offices.
Salary: On average, secretaries earn $32,655 a year.
5+ Volunteer Jobs for Seniors
#1. Volunteer at your local library. Libraries are often underfunded and looking for support during business hours. To be of help, you can become a volunteer and greet people as they walk in, answer phone calls, assist with inventory, dust and straighten shelves, conduct book audits, or any other library task.
#2. Volunteer virtually. There’s plenty of fulfilling volunteer opportunities you can do from the comfort of your own home, virtually. For example, you can:
- Help blind and low-vision people via video calls through the Be My Eyes app
- Support sexual assault victims by volunteering for the National Sexual Assault Hotline
- Take part in Career Village, which is a virtual affair where kids submit questions about various career paths and you can answer relevant ones, whenever you have free time.
- Sign up for Storiitime, an online service that connects children with seniors for virtual story hours. You must be over 50 to participate.
#3. Organize a fundraiser. Set up a bake sale, organize an online baking contest, put old books to sale, or offer free dog walking services.
#4. Join AmeriCorps Seniors. This movement offers volunteer opportunities for seniors 55 and older. You can help a struggling child learn how to read, deliver groceries to an elderly neighbor, support a family affected by a natural disaster, and so much more.
#5. Provide a hot meal. Once a week or month, you can cook a meal for a local homeless shelter or collect food to help a shelter out.
If you’re interested in learning more ways you can volunteer and help change the world, head over to our guide on nonprofit jobs & careers.
Job-Hunting for Seniors: What to Do & What to Expect
As much as we don’t want to be bearers of bad news, age discrimination in America is a significantly present issue.
According to an AARP survey, nearly 1 in 4 workers aged 45 and older have been subject to negative or inappropriate comments about their age from supervisors or coworkers. This study also found that 3 out of 5 older workers have seen or experienced age discrimination.
Hence, the number one thing you should do as a job-hunting senior is learn everything about your rights. You can start by reading the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), which forbids age discrimination against people who are 40 or older.
Now that we got the legal aspects out of the way, let’s move on to some actual search strategies you can use to successfully hunt for a job as a senior.
#1: Optimize Your Resume
First, you need to learn how to optimize your resume.
Resumes don’t go to the HR specialist straight away anymore. They first have to pass through an applicant tracking system (ATS) that collects, scans, and ranks all of the applications. And you know what? 70% of applicants actually fail to pass.
So, what can you do to write a resume that gets past applicant tracking systems? Optimize it to the software!
Make sure to pick a reverse-chronological resume format, save the document as a pdf, label your sections correctly, and avoid icons and unnecessary images.
Our guide on ATS resume can provide you with more details.
#2: Stand Out from Competitors
Next, it’s important that you stand out from the competition. Here are some tips to follow:
- Emphasize your work experience. As a senior, your biggest advantage is the decades of work experience you’ve gathered. Highlight the most relevant experiences for the job you’re applying to, both in your resume and during the job interview.
- Highlight your skills. The first thing you have to do is list all of the soft and hard skills you’ve developed/acquired throughout the years (read our 101+ essential skills guide for inspiration). Then, circle the ones that best fit the requirements of the job position and list them out on your resume’s “skills” section.
Lastly, there’s networking. You can never have too many professional connections.
Consider joining (or rejoining) social media, updating your LinkedIn page, and attending webinars and conferences - all these connections can lead to a job.
#4: Job Boards for Seniors
And that’s a wrap!
We hope our guide helped you figure out what work you want to do as a job-seeking senior, and what steps to take to get back into the job market.
For a quick recap, here are some of the main points we’ve covered in today’s post:
- Being a senior or a retiree doesn’t mean you can’t have a job again - there are plenty of great opportunities out there.
- If you only want to work part-time and choose your own hours, being a greeter, photographer, security guard, retail worker, or home care provider is a great option.
- If you have a physical disability or simply want to work from home, you can become a content writer, editor, telemarketer, or do data entry.
- If you’re looking for a more serious position that requires a degree, you can become a tax preparer, tutor, teacher, or consultant.
- And last, but certainly not least, if you want something fun and low-responsibility consider being a dog walker, tour guide, childcare worker, food delivery driver, or gardener.