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The Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, is trying to entice older workers back into the labour market1 — and he is not alone.

Budget airline easyJet is actively seeking empty-nest older adults who want to train to become flight attendants.2

And research for LinkedIn (the jobs networking website) found that almost three quarters of UK business leaders have tried to coax retirees back into the workplace.3

Our health needs evolve with age, and our risk of a wide range of conditions increases as we get older.4 So, offering tailored healthcare and support will give organisations an edge when recruiting and retaining older talent.

Healthcare needs

Brand benefits of genuine inclusion

Importance of over-50s

The think-tank Demos identifies poor health as the main reason for over-50s leaving the workforce.10

The need for leadership

Bupa’s purpose

Dr Naveen says,

“A one-size-fits-all approach won’t work as health needs shift dramatically in our 50s and 60s. The engagement and support you offer should reflect this.

“As they approach retirement age, one in four workers is getting to the point where a health condition limits what they can do.15

“Many will be living with chronic conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and MSK problems. The risk of developing cancer also rises with age.”

Training matters

Dr Naveen also points out,

“It’s also a mistake to think this demographic has less interest in ongoing training and career development.”

As the CIPD points out, “The impact of technology on jobs will increasingly mean workers will need to upskill or reskill at different stages of their career.”17

Policies and practices

The CIPD believes, “It is crucial that employers establish the people management policies and practices needed to recruit, train and retain an age diverse workforce. They need to harness the skills and experience older workers have effectively.”19

Dr Naveen says,

“There is a lot that employers can do to support the health and wellbeing of older employees. And this will have a positive impact across organisations as a whole."

These include:

Resources and guides

1 Reuters, 2023.
2 Telegraph, 2022.
3 Telegraph, 2023.
4 World Health Organization, 2022.
5 Bupa internal claims data, 2023.
6 Royal College of Surgeons, 2022.
7 CIPD, date unknown.
8 nomis, October 2018 - September 2019. (Total employment rate 31,257,400, over 50s 10,616,600 = 33.96%, rounded to 34%)
9 IFS (PDF, 0.5MB), 2022.
10 DEMOS (PDF, 0.6MB), page 17, 2022.
11 IFS (PDF, 0.5MB), page 26, 2022.
12 People Management, 2023.
13 City A.M, 2023.
14 DEMOS (PDF, 0.6MB), page 28, 2022.
15 CIPD (PDF, 1.0MB), page 16, 2022.
16 Bupa internal claims data to Dec 22. Members only 50-64 and 0-29.
17 CIPD (PDF, 1.0MB), page 20, 2022.
18 LACE Partners, 2023.
19 CIPD (PDF, 1.0MB), 2022.

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