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Don’t write off your older workers

Skills shortages, falling birth rates, greater life expectancy, low unemployment levels and squeezed public finances are increasing job opportunities for older workers.

They can bring valuable benefits to the workplace that offset slightly elevated health and safety risks.

Ageing workforce

Older workers are increasingly represented in the workplace. They often need to work for longer as the state pension age is progressively pushed back into later years; from 2020, men and women will both qualify at 66, increasing to 67 between 2026 and 2028, and linked to life expectancy thereafter.

A lack of experienced and competent candidates in the UK labour market is being translated into more job openings for what can be termed “vulnerable” workers, who may include migrant employees, new and expectant mothers, people with disabilities, plus young and older workers.

From an employer’s perspective, these prospective staff members regularly bring with them valuable workplace strengths, even though extra care over health and safety issues is usually necessary.


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