Only a quarter of staff are aware that retirement age will increase

Only a quarter of employees are aware that minimum retirement age is set to rise from 50 to 55 in April 2010,according to research conducted by Aon Consulting.

The survey of 4,046 employees across the UK also showed that less than a third (31%) of workers aged between 45 and 54 said they were aware of the increase to the minimum retirement age. This is despite the fact that a significant amount of these workers could effectively be forced to work up to five years longer than they had planned.

Similarly, less than half (46%) knew that the state pension age for women is rising to 65 in 2010, possibly forcing millions of women into working for up to five extra years, particularly if they have planned to use the state pension as the bulk of their retirement income.

Helen Dowsey, principal at Aon Consulting, said: “These findings have clear implications for Britain’s workforce and their employers. It is disappointing, but not entirely surprising, that so few people are aware of changes to the minimum retirement age and the state pension age.

“Employers must not only help their workforce understand the implications of retiring but also review and prepare for alterations to their own budgets. With an older workforce, benefits costs are going to rise and employers must be prepared.”