Nearly two in five employees believe that an ageing workforce will hinder a younger generation’s future career progression, according to a new research from Canada Life Group Insurance.
21 to 30 year olds showed the most concern for this, with 46 percent in agreement compared with only 21 percent of 51-60 year olds.
There is a growing trend in the number of employees staying in the workplace for longer, with almost two thirds (61%) of employees expected to work beyond the age of 65.
Paul Avis, Marketing Director of Canada Life Group, comments:
“Older workers have much to offer an organisation, including years of experience and often an in-depth knowledge of how their company works. However, younger employees are clearly concerned that an older workforce will make the jobs market more static, preventing them from progressing in their careers.”
Employees also believe that an older workforce would produce greater health issues which would result in a changing work dynamic (20%). 23 percent of staff think older workers would need to be retrained or learn new skills in order to stay in work and 18 percent think employers should provide more incentives for older staff to retire in order to prevent these problems.
More provisions would need to be implemented to support an older workforce. Flexible working is a popular solution with 43 percent believing it would be most important to help staff succeed. Other solutions include part-time opportunities (23%) and new skills training (21%).
Employee benefits are also important and 20 percent believe that critical illness cover is the most useful product for those aged 65 and over. This is followed by income protection (19%) and life insurance (11%).
However, almost a third (31%) of employees do not receive any workplace benefits, an increase from 5 percent to 26 percent from 2014.
“Employers can dissuade these fears by making provisions that reassure staff of all ages they care about their wellbeing, job satisfaction and progression. However, older employees will often need specific support, particularly as health issues tend to be more common among those who work beyond the age of 65. It is therefore concerning that such a large number of employees fail to receive any benefits in support of this, with almost a third receiving no benefits at all.
“Workplace benefits are an integral part of staff recruitment and retention as well as offering invaluable support to employees and their family members should an accident or illness occur. Auto-enrolment (AE) has created the perfect opportunity for organisations to review their whole benefits offering, and many protection products can be brought in at a relatively low cost. As smaller companies reach their AE staging date, all employers should be considering whether their benefits package supports a happy and productive workforce.”