Companies Not Focused on Eligible Retirees

SC&C Companies Need to Recognize Retiring Work ForceBusinesses are in trouble and they don’t even know it! HR professionals don’t even recognize the severity of the problem; worse yet, most don’t even consider it a problem. The majority of them are completely oblivious and wouldn’t know what a Clarion call was if it came up and kicked them in the shins. And ignoring it is not going to make it go away.

In 2002 people aged 55 years or older comprised only 14 percent of our work force. By 2012 that figure was up to 21 percent. By 2022 it is fully expected that more than a quarter of our work force (26 percent) will be over the age of 55.

Facing a wave of retirements, most businesses have no idea what is at stake TREND WATCH

Businesses Pushing the Retirement Age

We are losing wisdom, intelligence, and experience faster than it can be replaced. More and more of these workers are being forced to work beyond 65 years of age because we simply can’t replace them. Gone are the days when we could expect a gold watch and two or three decades of sitting on the dock up at the cottage, watching pastoral sunsets.

My father made his last orbit around the Sun in 1992, and he didn’t get to retire until he was 70 years of age. Now I’m looking at working into my eighties before I can get out of this rat race. I’m just glad my family sticks around into their 100s so I can spend at least a little time sitting on the dock and fishing.

HR Not Looking At Employees’ Retirements

Most of us don’t want to die at our desks. Yet it might happen, if we are obliged to keep geriatrics on staff because we just don’t have their replacements.

This lack of concern on the part of HR is stunning, particularly in light of all the media attention on skill shortages and an increasing difficulty in recruiting. Personally I attribute it to ignorance of the numbers. Less than half of all HR personnel polled report that they actually track who is eligible to retire in the next year or the next five years, and it seems that no one has the foresight to look at the next 10 years. They’re certainly not serving the interests of the company by failing to look ahead like this.

Pending Skills Gap with Retiring Work Force

Only one-fifth of companies have actually undertaken serious research in the form of strategic workforce assessments to try to figure out what’s going to happen with all these 55-year-old (and above) workers. At least this 20 percent is making some effort to find out what kind of skill gaps they’re going to be encountering less than a decade down the road. They’re the ones that are going to be prepared to solve that problem, and not scrambling like the other 80 percent who are doing nothing right now.

Jen Schramm is manager of Workforce Trends and tells us, “Businesses can start to address the upcoming skills gap by first filling the knowledge gap about the potential size and the impact of the wave of retirements to come.

Use Retiring Employees to Train New Hires

SC&C RetireesTraining New HiresOf those doing the appropriate background work now, while they still have a chance to be effective, they’re attempting to persuade their older workers to stick it out for a few extra years. They want them focused on passing on as much knowledge as possible to the next generation.

They need the old warhorses to educate young executives with styles of doing business, techniques for solving problems, firefighting in the field, generating customer loyalty, purchasing strategies, and all the other things that they just do automatically without thinking.

Are you paying attention whether you are the trainer or the trainee?

Stewart, Cooper & Coon, has helped thousands of decision makers and senior executives during their job searches. Their clients have moved up in their careers and achieved significantly improved financial packages within short time frames. Contact Fred Coon – 866-883-4200, Ext. 200, to learn how SC&C and their team of professionals can help you, and connect with SC&C on LinkedIn at

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