Government appoints Ros Altmann champion for older workers

The government has appointed Dr Ros Altmann its new business champion for older workers.


Altmann, who is a former director-general of Saga and an independent expert on later life issues, will be tasked with making the case for older workers within the business community and challenging outdated perceptions.

The appointment follows the government’s report Fuller working lives – a framework for action, which was published in June 2014.

The report set out the benefits to individuals, business and the economy of people over the age of 50 staying in work.

Altmann said: “I am so pleased that the government has shown it recognises the importance of encouraging people to stay in the labour market, rather than giving up before they need to.

“This will bring benefits all round: to individuals, to business and to the economy as a whole. A big part of my role is to work with employers to understand the significant benefits of retaining and recruiting older workers.

“I am really proud to be taking on this new role and look forward to championing over-50s in the workplace. This fast-growing section of society has so much experience and talent to offer and could play a vital role in future growth. 

“Everyone can benefit from ensuring their skills do not go to waste. I also look forward to challenging some of the outdated and downright inaccurate perceptions of later-life workers who still have so much to offer.”

Steve Webb, pensions minister, added: “In appointing a business champion for older workers I wanted a powerful voice, someone respected among the business community, with a track record of speaking up for consumer rights without fear or favour. In Dr Ros Altmann, that’s exactly what we have.

“Older workers have a huge amount to bring to any workforce and are a vast, untapped talent in the UK labour market. The business case is compelling and I am delighted that [Altmann] will now be taking a lead in going out and making that case directly to the business community.”