The report found that, among other things, the percentage of workers aged 55 and over will increase from 18% to 21% and that while thehe participation rate of workers aged 20-44 will decrease, the participation rate of workers aged 55-59 will increase from 79.6% to 82.4% and the participation rate of workers aged 60-64 will increase from 67.1% to 75%.
“The fact that the workforce is ageing is not new, the twin issues of the skills shortage and the pending wave of retiring Baby Boomers seems to have been debated perennially,” said [Mercer’s Business Leader in New Zealand, Mr Bernie O’Brien].Source: Mercer Press Release (November 27, 2008)
“But this research clarifies and cements the fact that one of the biggest business risks in New Zealand in the immediate future is not just economic factors – it is the significant demographic shifts occurring that will threaten the sustainability of many New Zealand businesses.
“New Zealanders aged 55 and older are, and will continue to be, the answer to the current skills shortage - not Gen Y.
“This is not about changing a few HR policies. There needs to be a shift in the mindset of how, and for how long, New Zealanders work,” he said.