The unemployment crisis is targeting mid-career workers at a higher rate as the pandemic exacerbates negative views of these job seekers aged 45 and older, according to a new report. 

Generation.org, a non-profit employment organization, found in its study that hiring managers strongly favor younger job candidates, saying they are more application-ready, have more relevant experience, and are a better fit with company culture. 

Ageism worsened with the pandemic as several companies transitioned to remote work, adopting new technology platforms to create the work-from-home virtual workspace. 

According to the survey, 63% of job seekers between the ages of 45 and 60 are unemployed for more than a year compared to only 36% of those aged between 18 and 24.

Generation’s CEO Mona Mourshed said the report had, for the first time, “put a number on ageism.”

“This is a demographic that is absolutely in need and it’s very clear that once you reach a certain age, it just becomes much harder to access a job opportunity,” Mourshed told CNBC.

Training could potentially help these unemployed mid-career workers. Of the surveyed Gen X workers, 74% say that attending training helped them secure their new position.

However, those who need it the most are reluctant to pursue training due to lack of access, education and financial support. 

Employers have also raised their expectations. Job requirements are now more stringent for 73% of entry-level roles and for 63% of intermediate-level roles, the report found. 

These generational differences are not unique to the United States. The “challenges and experiences of 45+ individuals are global, displaying striking consistency around the world,” the report said.