Meaningful Ways to Support an Aging Workforce

America’s workforce is aging rapidly — and it will have an impact on your business. Baby boomers were born between 1944 and 1964 and currently are between 55 to 75 years old. About 10,000 baby boomers are turning 65 every day — a trend that started in 2011 — according to the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM).

At that rate, the U.S. Census Bureau estimates that the 65-and-older population will nearly double over the next three decades from 48 million to 88 million by 2050. An aging workforce means that employers will need to fill the talent gap left by retiring baby boomers with younger workers who have the skills to replace them.

Employers also will have to determine how to best meet the needs of an aging workforce postponing retirement. Studies indicate that many employers are not prepared for this significant transition. A SHRM survey in 2016 revealed that only 35 percent of U.S. companies had analyzed the near-term impact of older workers leaving the workforce.

A 2018 study by the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies (TCRS) found that employers often think they are more prepared to handle this phase than their workers think they are. Eighty-two percent of employers said their company is supportive of its employees’ working past 65, while only 72 percent of workers agree that their employer is supportive.

Many retirement age workers can’t afford to retire because they haven’t saved a sufficient income for retirement. While there’s no magic number an individual should save, conventional wisdom is that new retirees should have saved $1 million to $1.5 million or have savings equal to 10 to 12 times their current income. Other retirees had saved enough, but the 2008 financial crisis left many with debt and/or insufficient income from their retirement savings.

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