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Governments should respond to needs of older workers

Governments should respond to needs of older workers

Illustration of older workers in an officeWhile firms are already being asked to do more to support their older workers by organisations like The Centre for Ageing Better, a new OECD report is arguing that it is an issue that Governments are not addressing as well as they might. It claims that the rapidly ageing population of countries around the world means that governments should promote more and better job opportunities for older workers to protect living standards and the sustainability of public finances.

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Firms need to place more value on older workers

Firms need to place more value on older workers

Older workers are now a key part of the workforceAs we live longer lives, it’s inevitable that more of us want to work for longer. It makes good business sense too: with fewer younger people starting work to replace those set to retire in future years, coupled with uncertainty over Brexit and labour shortages, employers can’t afford to lose older workers.

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Rise in employment led by self-employed and older workers

Rise in employment led by self-employed and older workers

employment figuresAs with the last few months, the latest UK employment figures look like a sea of tranquillity. The number of people in work is up ever so slightly (setting another record), unemployment down slightly again (ditto) and earnings continuing to grow. After a couple of months where there were hints that the labour market might be cooling down, today’s figures suggest that it is heating up once more. However beneath the surface, the numbers highlight some big changes in employment trends – with two things in particular standing out. More →

Women and older workers drive record employment

Women and older workers drive record employment

ONS says women and older workers helped drive record employment ratesThe number of people in employment in the UK increased by 32,000 to a record high of 32.75 million in the three months to April 2019, according to the latest Labour Force Survey (LFS) from the Office of National Statistics (ONS). This was driven by women whose numbers increased by 60,000 on the quarter to a record high of 15.46 million.

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More than 600 people quit work to look after older and disabled relatives every day

More than 600 people quit work to look after older and disabled relatives every day

New research by Carers UK claims that 2.6 million have quit their job to care for a loved one who is older, disabled or seriously ill, with nearly half a million (468,000) leaving their job in the last two years alone – more than 600 people a day. This is a 12 per cent increase since Carers UK and YouGov polled the public in 2013. The findings also show that more people are caring than previously thought, with almost 5 million workers now juggling their paid job with caring – a dramatic rise compared with Census 2011 figures of 3 million.

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ONS says Ill health and caring duties biggest barriers to work for older people

ONS says Ill health and caring duties biggest barriers to work for older people

Ill health and caring duties biggest barriers to work for older people says ONSThe two most important barriers to working for those in their 50s and early to mid-60s are health and caring; according to the latest analysis from the ONS. Living longer: Fitting it all in – working, caring and health in later life, advises that although people in their 50s and early 60s have a good level of general health the prevalence of health problems increases over this age range and impacts on the likelihood of being in paid work. Of those potential older workers who are out of work (but would like to work), 38 percent of men and 28 percent of women are unemployed. Women are more likely to be looking after home or family than men (19 percent and 6 percent). Over a third of people aged 50 to 64 years are out of work because they are sick or disabled – with ill health the main barrier to working for both men (37 percent) and women (35 percent).

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Older workers would like more flexible working opportunities

Older workers would like more flexible working opportunities

A survey carried out on behalf of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has found that the majority of workers aged over 50 would ‘welcome more flexibility’ in the workplace. The survey, which polled more than 12,000 workers over the age of 50, revealed that 78 percent would like ‘more flexible hours’. A further 73 percent want to see more part-time positions being offered, while 63 percent wish for more training schemes to help them use new technology and gain new skills.

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Mid-life report published to help older workers manage their careers

Mid-life report published to help older workers manage their careers

Mid-life MOT report published to help older workers manage their careersLast year John Cridland published his Review of the State Pension age, and one of his recommendations was for a ‘Mid-Life MOT’ for people’s late 50s and early 60s. Now a joint report, ‘Developing the mid-life MOT’, published today by the Centre for Ageing Better, outlines the response by industry to the review’s call for a better way of supporting people in their 40s, 50s and 60s to think about their careers and future lives. The report presents case studies of different approaches to the ‘mid-life MOT’ being tried out by Aviva, Legal and General, The Pensions Advisory Service (TPAS) and Mercer and offers insights to other employers thinking about introducing similar support for their own workers. The report suggests it is important that a mid-life MOT is the start of an engagement process, with participants signposted and encouraged to take up further support. Mid-life MOTs need a clear purpose that is understood by all stakeholders and participants.

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Call for employers to do more for older workers

Call for employers to do more for older workers

A new report from the charity and lobbying group the Centre for Ageing Better has called for employers to be more age-friendly and inclusive of those over 50, including doing more to tackle age discrimination in the workplace. According to the study, significant numbers of older workers feel they are being discriminated against at work because of their age, including believing they have been turned down for jobs (9 percent) and being offered fewer opportunities for training and progression (32 percent).

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Older workers need more support in the workplace, claims report

Older workers need more support in the workplace, claims report

Longer working lives have become a reality for millions, yet a significant number of older workers feel unsupported in the workplace, according to new findings from Aviva which claim to highlight the need for UK businesses to boost support for their older workforce. Almost two thirds (63 percent) of the 10.2 million over-50s in work – equivalent to 6.4 million people – are planning to retire later than they thought they would 10 years ago. Many of them are extending their working lives due to the rising cost of living (40 percent) and insufficient pension savings (38 percent).

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The talents of older people are going to waste because of discrimnation, claims government report

The talents of older people are going to waste because of discrimnation, claims government report

The talents of more than a million people aged over 50 who want to work are being wasted because of discrimination, bias and outdated employment practices, claims a new report from the UK government. The report from The Women and Equalities Committee also concludes that Government and the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) are failing to enforce the law on age discrimination and must be clearer that prejudice, unconscious bias and casual ageism in the workplace are all unlawful under the Equality Act 2010. Although the Committee concludes that the Government’s employer-led approach has its advantages, it does not present a strong enough challenge to discriminatory practices or attitudes.

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Businesses told to consider the interests of workers and other stakeholders in new code

Businesses told to consider the interests of workers and other stakeholders in new code

The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has published its new Corporate Governance Code in a bid to improve trust in UK business. The new Code will remain on the “comply or explain” basis mandatory for which it has been criticised in the past, but has been broadly welcomed by industry bodies. The code sets out a number of recommendations aimed at improving culture and trust in business, of which it suggests at least one be applied. They include having a director appointed from the workforce, a formal workforce advisory panel and a designated non-executive director. The Code will apply to accounting periods from January 2019 and is applicable to all companies with a premium listing.

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