September 30, 2015

British workers are postponing retirement, shows survey

A third of over-55s in the UK are planning to work past the traditional retirement age of 65, according to a report.

Research by the Centre for the Modern Family think tank, sponsored by the financial services company Scottish Widows, also found that 15% of men and 9% of women had returned to work after retiring.
Among men returning to work, the main motivation was boredom in retirement (cited by 57%), whereas the main reason for women was financial pressure (38%).
The UK abolished its default retirement age of 65 in 2011, since when the number of over-65s remaining in work has increased by 26%.
Jackie Leiper, Director of Employer Relationships for Scottish Widows, commented: “A more diverse and flexible workforce brings significant potential for us to increase our productivity and competitiveness as a nation. However, we will only make it a success if we fully support employees finding the right balance between work and family commitments later on in their working lives.”
IZA World of Labor author Carol Graham has written about the relationship between late-life work and well-being. She writes that those who work later in life have higher levels of well-being than retirees, and that: “Flexible work time and retirement options are a potential solution for the challenges of unemployment, aging populations, and unsustainable pensions systems around the world.”
Bernhard Boockmann has also written for us about the effect of wage subsidies in hiring older workers. Noting that such subsidies are often ineffective, he writes that: “Where subsidies are meant to counteract incentives for early retirement, the focus should be on removing such incentives and increasing the employability of older workers instead of subsidizing wages.”
Related articles:
Late-life work and well-being by Carol Graham
The effects of wage subsidies for older workers by Bernhard Boockmann
The effect of early retirement schemes on youth employment by René Böheim
Is training effective for older workers? by Matteo Picchio