Nearly half of over-50s want to keep working post 65


Almost half of employees (48%) over the age of 50 want to keep working between the age of 65 and 70, according to new research from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

The independent YouGov study, which surveyed more than 2,000 retired and non-retired people aged over 50, also revealed that 17% of staff said that working full time and then stopping work altogether would be the best way for them to retire.

The research is part of Dr Ros Altmann’s work as business champion for older workers.

Further findings of the survey include:

  • 39% of respondents said that working part time or flexible hours before stopping work altogether would be the best way to retire.
  • Over 1 in 4 (25%) said they would be interested in taking a few months off and then returning to work as an alternative to retirement.
  • 36% of respondents said their advice to others would be to ‘consider switching to flexible or part time work for a period first’ before stopping work altogether
  • 33% of those working aged over 70 said they did so because they enjoyed it.
  • 23% of respondents felt they are viewed ‘less favourably than younger workers’, while 51% said that they thought that their employer views older workers ‘as favourably as younger workers’.
  • 15% of those not currently retired report experiencing age-based discrimination in the workplace.

Steve Webb, minister for pensions, said: “How we all look at retirement is changing and the way in which government and business help older workers needs to keep up with the times.

“We are making giant steps in improving this support with almost 250,000 more people aged 50 to 64 joining the labour market over the last year, and over a million workers aged 65 and over now in work.

“The results show there is no single view of retirement any more, but the message from older workers is clear; employers need to keep up with changes to society, and we have to ensure over-50s have the skills in place to continue developing their careers throughout their working lives.

Altmann (pictured) said: “Millions of over 50s have changed their retirement plans in recent years, and now expect to retire later. Clearly later life working is very much more important to people than before.

“It is also clear that many older people no longer see retirement as turning their back on work. They want to work longer, but shift the pace while still making the most of their skills.

“What’s great is that more employers are now getting the message that older workers can have a valuable role in business, particularly as they increasingly represent their future customers and workforce.”