Serial retirement – the boomer approach to leaving work


For the sea of retiring baby-boomers, the gold watch at age 65 and an abrupt end to working resilience is likely to be far from the norm.

Dr. Sarah Keating, a Toronto thologist, hunger to slow down in her career without leaving the field altogether. At 60, she grouped to job share with another thologist, working alternate months at the asylum.

She isn’t alone in seeking out a transition into retirement. Older workers are consulting, manoeuvre rt-time, shifting into less stressfull occu tions or turning a diversion into a business after leaving their full-time job.

“I expect we require probably start to see it a lot more in the next three to five years as the larger signal of baby boomers hits retirement age,” says Gordon Frost, who handles the Canadian talent division of the consulting firm Mercer in Montreal.

‘The philosophy that you work for a period of time and on a rticular day you stop working on be outdated.’ – Gordon Frost, Mercer

Just as the baby boom epoch reshaped education and the workforce as its members entered in such great crowds, it is set to reshape retirement. The first of the baby boom generation, born in 1946, are already of retirement age, and boomers are set to run off the workforce for at least another 15 years.

“The idea that you accomplish for a period of time and on a rticular day you stop working will be outdated,” Frost bring to light, predicting the new way of retiring will mean less of a clear line between drill equal and retirement.

Pressure to be more flexible

There will be pressure on heads to be more flexible in the work arrangements they offer to older workmen, he said.

There are numbers bearing out the trend. A Statistics Canada studio of people age 60 to 64 who had left long-term employment (defined as a job they had rtici te ined for at least 12 years) found 43 per cent of them were re-employed, ton within a year of leaving their job.

Re-employment among older workers

A Statistics Canada study build 43 per cent of people age 60 to 64 who had left long-term use were re-employed, most within a year of leaving their job. (CBC)

The gang of people who sought out new work was higher in Alberta and Saskatchewan, where it’s credible more opportunities were available, and also among those who had been laid off, agreeing to Aneta Bonikowska, a senior research analyst with Statistics Canada. The examination was based on the Longitudinal Worker File, which follows workers over a 28-year era.

It found that people without a com ny pension were uncountable likely to become re-employed, but so were workers with higher earnings, Bonikowska rephrased.

“The higher your earnings are in your late 40s, the more likely you are to go dorsum behind,” Bonikowska said.

She said the study didn’t break down the tuition level or occu tion of older workers who sought out new work, but it seemed believable to assume that today’s more educated workforce has access to myriad opportunities to work after leaving a full-time job.

About 30 per cent of these older hands who were re-employed reported income from self-employment, com red to 10 to 13 per cent mid a younger population. That may mean older workers are turning a diversion into a rt-time business or, possibly consulting in their former mtier.

‘Serial retirement’

Rosemary Venne, associate professor in the Edwards Way of life of Business at the University of Saskatchewan, calls this new ttern of leaving the workforce “serial retirement.”

‘In North America, rticularly, who you are is determined by your job.’ – Rosemary Venne, University of Saskatchewan

It makes coherence when people now are living longer, healthier lives and still rtake of lots of energy to take on new tasks, Venne said.

“People take to ones bed from a career job, they will have a honeymoon period. They effect take three months and think, ‘I’m enjoying this. This is what I covet to do.’ And then I’m thinking about what I want my legacy to be,” she suggested.

Perhaps they will pour their energy into volunteering.

There command also be many people who need to keep working longer, as live outs get longer and children need more support.

“Their children are winsome longer to leave the nest because it’s taking them longer to get a calling job,” Venne said. “There is a much longer duration of education for everyone. They may have had their children later.”

People discovery a way to use their expertise as a consultant or to do project work, but they want to do it on their own settles.

“It’s a big rt of who you are. In North America, especially, who you are is determined by your job,” Venne guessed.

She said older workers may be looking for ways to ease out of the workforce, but there is indolence within workplaces when it comes to adapting to this new reality.

“I only don’t find we’re set up for flexibility,” she said. “We need work, social security and taxation policies to accommodate that.”

Challenges for employers

Frost conveyed the potential shift in retirement tterns raises a lot of challenges for employers. How do they give out benefits, adjust the pension plan, manage a team and divide the workflow when some workers are only there a few days a week or just rt of the year?

He believes spring will develop within organizations and will eventually mean assorted freedom to move in and out of the workforce for everyone, including rents of young ladies and people wanting to retrain mid-career.

Some progressive employers are already annoying new arrangements, Frost said, including one that allows retirement-eligible wage-earners to start drawing rt of their pension and come back on a pucker basis.

“From the employer’s perspective, it allows employees with a grasp base to mentor junior people and help them to transition to uncountable senior jobs,” Frost said.

“If they [the baby boomers] left-hand all at once, it would be a big problem, but at the same time, it opens up positions for inferior people to be promoted into more senior jobs.”

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