In Australia, not all seniors are traveling the world and enjoying their retirement. Scores remain in the workforce–and that changes the dynamics.
Why Aussie Seniors Are Not Leaving Work
According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), around one in every seven people were at least 65 years old in 2017. Meanwhile, over 10% participated in education, training, and work in 2016.
The number of older people in the workforce also increased significantly. In 2006, only 8% of them remained in their jobs. In 2018,it climbed to 13%.Why are seniors keeping their jobs? It’s a combination of many factors, including:
A better lifestyle and medicine improvement equal to longer lives. From 2014 to 2016, 65-year-old Australian men could live for 20 more years. Women’s lifespan could extend for 22.
With more years ahead of them, seniors intend to spend it doing something worthwhile. Most ofall,they wanted to generate more income than depending entirely on their pension.
2. Increasing the Minimum Retirement Age
By the time Aussies are ready to retire, much of their income will be from their pension. This could only do so much.To help it cope with the growing older population, the government has to raise the minimum retirement age over time.
Currently, the age pension for men is 65; women, 64. By 2023, it will increase to 67.Working, therefore, even when they’re past 60, allows them to contribute further to their pension.
What Does It Mean for theWorkforce?
Having seniors in the workforce is also advantageous for businesses. These are individuals with solid years of experience and expertise. Keeping them means saving costs on training and continuous productivity.
A Deloitte report also revealed that companies view an aging workforce to be diverse. These seniors were also a resource of wisdom, knowledge, and life experience. They can complement, guide, and even mentor the younger employees.
Their presence, though, could also be challenging. For example, acommercial stair design should be not only aesthetically appealing but also accessible.These stairs need to have uniform treads, levels, and risers. The handrails should help keep them steady and not slippery. Light is also essential along the pathway.
Higher absenteeism could also offset productivity gains. This might bedue to the progressive failing health of older employees. They are already prone to chronic diseases and workplace injuries.
Frailty could compel some of them to retire eventually or work only for a few hours or part-time.Contrary to popular belief, many seniors use technology.A 2017 study inFrontiers in Psychology even cited how they are eager to learn.
But barriers exist, and these prevent them from adapting well. These include alack of clear instructions or guidance and poor usability features of the devices.Experts believe seniors are less likely to leave the workforce soon. More will decide to stay as the population grows older.
Companies can benefit better from their presence if they design the workplace to suit their aging employees as well.