Saturday, February 12, 2011

German Employers Need To Ensure Employment Policies Attract Older Workers

In an article in Deutsche Welle, John Blau reports that, as the days of allowing workers in Germany to retire as early as age 55 are long gone and as many employees begin to suffer from chronic aches and pains in their mid-50s and, increasingly, from mental fatigue, employers must do more to retain them and keep them productive on the job. Thus, according to Michael Stolpe from the Kiel Institute for World Economy:
"Companies in Germany will need once again to invest more in the healthcare of their employees, as they used to do before competition forced some big changes in the labor market," he told Deutsche Welle. "Back then, employees stayed longer with companies - sometimes their entire career - and employers, in turn, took good care of them. It was a win-win situation."
In addition, Blau quotes Christiane Fl├╝ter-Hoffmann from the Cologne Institute for Economic Research as saying that companies will need to become "more attractive" to employees and potential hires. Among other things, this "begins with managers who can motivate and ease stress," but she also pointed to the need for human resource development strategies tailored to an older workforce. "In many companies, training ends at age 45."

Source: Deutsche Welle "Aging Germany must keep older workers healthy and happy" (February 1, 2011)

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