A Majority of Businesses Are Not Prepared To Meet The Aging Workforce Crisis
Business Research Services for AARP, October 2006
83% of employers agree that workers approaching traditional retirement age will play a greater role in the U.S. workforce over the next decade.
“Despite an overall awareness of the potential implications of the aging workforce, few companies have taken action to prepare.”
The Gap Between Recognition and Implementation Presents Both Challenges and Opportunities
Whether you are a safety and health professional, a human resources manager, an administrator, an industrial hygienist, an ergonomist, an occupational medicine physician or a nurse the idea of the "aging workforce" may not be entirely new to you. You may already be familiar with some of the general issues. Odds are, though, that wherever you stand, your organization has yet to prepare for this enormous demographic shift.
There's little question that as the baby boom generation edges toward retirement, many things will change. Many of these changes will be predictable ones and the employers, unions and other organizations that prepare will thrive in an increasingly competitive labor market.
Older workers have skills, experience and work ethics that are good for business.
Baby Boomers – born between 1946 and 1964
- Will be turning 65 at the rate of 8000 per day for the next 18 years
- In 2010 as many as 60% of today’s experienced utility workers will retire (April 2005 IBEW Journal)
- Significantly lower number of workers between ages 45 to 55 to take their place
- Average age of workers entering skilled crafts is 33
Not only is the population as whole getting older on average, the working population is aging as well. That the workforce is aging is no surprise to many employers.
AARP Research Data
- 1998 AARP survey of 400 employers
- More than half of employers surveyed knew what needed to be done to prepare for an aging workforce
- Far fewer employers had programs in place to prepare