Tuesday, June 21, 2016

New Zealand: Businesses Not Geared Up For Older Workers

New Zealand's Retirement Commissioner has issued a report finding that while the number of New Zealanders working past 65 is on the rise, most businesses are not geared up for them. According to the study--"Ageing workforce business survey, May 2016"--carried out as part of the Commissioner’s review of retirement income policies, 83% of the 500 companies questioned have no policies or strategies in place for workers aged over 50. Furthermore, "it doesn’t matter what sort of work they do: the results for those engaged in manual work, such as farming and forestry, were no different to those in manufacturing or the service sector."

Among other things, the survey found that:
  • 69% of the businesses agree that there’s a shortage of highly experienced workers in their industry;
  • 70% are concerned about losing skills and experience when older workers retire; and
  • 77% of companies do not carry out any active retirement planning to help their employees transition from full-time work.
Source: Commission for Financial Capability "Businesses ignore NZ's ageing workforce" (June 21, 2016)

Pew Research Finds More Older Americans Working Longer, and More

In an analysis of BLS data, the Pew Research Center has found that more Americans aged 65 and older are working than at any time since the turn of the century, and that they are spending more time on the job than did their peers in previous years. Thus, in May 2016, 18.8% of older Americans--nearly 9 million people--reported being employed full- or part-time, compared to May 2000, when just 12.8% of 65-and-older Americans--about 4 million people--said they were working.

With respect to the amount of time spent working, Pew Research Center reports that the percent of older Americans working part-time (fewer than 35 hours a week) fell from 46.1% in May 2000 to 36.1% in May 2016.
The share of both older men and older women who are working has grown over time, but working during what are commonly thought of as retirement years remains a largely male phenomenon: Although less than 45% of the total 65-and-older population are men, they represent more than 55% of older workers. Older Asians (20.2%) and whites (19%) are somewhat more likely to be working than older blacks (16.7%).
Source: Pew Research Center Fact Tank (June 20, 2016)