Posts Tagged ‘workforce’

Preparing Your Organization For The Aging Workforce

Huge changes in the labor force draw near. Here’s how to get prepared!

Baby Boomers are a very influential demographic of people born after World War II, in the years 1946‒1964, and will soon represent a whopping 40 percent of the workforce. In 1950, only one in six workers were over the age of 55. In less than two decades, one of every four workers will be over age 55. Multigenerational organizations are now the norm, with many organizations employing people who are in their sixth or seventh decade of life.

The impact is enormous. It will continue to affect the workplace everywhere in the U.S. Some Boomers plan to retire, leaving giant gaps and a vortex-style “brain drain” across most industries. Others will stay working or shift to part-time employment, creating new challenges most organizations are unaware of or unequipped to handle. Either way, the costs could be devastating, so preparing now is crucial.

Activate These 3 Concepts to Avoid Trouble:

(1) Retention

Economic woes have resulted in most Boomers not being ready for retirement at the normal age range of 62 to 70. The AARP reports that a full 25 percent of Boomers have no savings on which to retire whatsoever, and a mere 14 percent plan to retire when the time comes. Nevertheless, only 52 percent of organizations have policies to rehire retired workers. Ensure that your organization is ready for this inevitability.

(2) Train for the Talent Gap

Many Boomers have vast working experience, crucial expertise, and command top pay. Too few organizations are utilizing Boomers to train younger workers while they are still around. Job mentoring, job shadowing, and job sharing with younger workers are three important options to make the transition less painful. Move quickly to create programs to train younger workers alongside Boomers before it’s too late. Additionally, more sophisticated recruitment and hiring programs are needed to find qualified and competent talent in a shrinking pool with a wider age spectrum.

(3) Accommodate

Most organizations are not prepared to accommodate aging workers; so work-related disability claims are expected to rise sharply. That’s expensive! Take steps now to create a safe and accommodating work environment to avoid injuries and to make working less stressful for an older workforce. A Human Resources consultant can assess what changes are necessary to avoid workplace injuries and boost morale.

Those Boomers who want to continue working often face discrimination and prejudice. In truth, this population typically comprises excellent workers who are far more flexible, able to learn, and more technologically savvy than the persisting stereotype would have us believe. Plus, employment laws protect them against unfair hiring practices. Avoid lawsuits and potential problems by knowing the law and complying with it. If you have not read this article regarding HR legal compliance, please do so.

According to the Sloan Center on Aging and Work, organizations can do a lot to ensure that Boomers work to an older age and do well on the job. Flexible work options, participation in decisions, chances to develop new skills and competencies, and regular engagement will help Boomers succeed in your organization for years to come. By valuing them properly, you will mutually reap the rewards.

As the demographic shifts, many organizations will experience disruption or harm—but it doesn’t have to be your organization! Right now is the time to make sure that you are prepared for the biggest demographic shift in the history of American labor.




In His Name HR helps organizations build high performance Human Resources programs. Visit them at In HIS Name HR or e-mail them here.

Mark A. Griffin is the founder and chief consultant of In His Name HR LLC. Connect with him on LinkedIn or Twitter.



Obama Care IHN HR

Obama Care: Tips for Employers

Nothing creates panic in business like massive changes and spikes in expenses, especially when handed down by bureaucrats. Healthcare and benefits are on everyone’s mind. Employers are scrambling to make sense of it all and many tell me they are anxious. And with good reason. The many complicated new regulations, terminology, and alterations in healthcare laws are confusing.

These new changes are forcing companies to manage their finances, and the increased costs and government penalties will limit the quality and kind of care and benefits options available, as the financial facts drive important company decisions.

Here’s a quick summary chart of what’s entailed in the new Affordable Care Act (Obama Care) that unfolds over the next ten years and requires companies or individuals to buy healthcare to avoid stiff fines. Plus, the IRS now has new powers to garnish money from those who do not purchase insurance. Everything is different now!

What can you do?

Get advice. Find a reputable advisor who knows the ins and outs of company benefits. This is a critical necessity now, just like having an accountant is essential during tax season.

Maintain your patience. It will take time for things to settle. Don’t wear yourself out by being an alarmist.

Be transparent. Let your employees know about the increasing costs and that the changes in government intervention and mandates are not within your control.

Express empathy. Let your employees know that the changes in benefits and care are understandably disconcerting and that, in light of the new laws, neither you nor they can change the situation.

Encourage preventative care. Encourage and incentivize healthier living habits and make it easier for your workers to take personal responsibility for their own good health. Reward nonsmokers, healthy eaters, those who get routine health checkups, and those who exercise and maintain a healthy weight. Some government rulings and incentives make this more attractive. More on that here.

Here are some ways to create a company culture that supports a healthier way of living:

  • Be an example for your employees, be fit!
  • Include a workout room at your company
  • Start a lunchtime walking club or company team (softball, soccer, bowling, etc.)
  • Pay for employees to complete smoking cessation programs
  • Put healthy choices in the snack machines; encourage a salad potluck day
  • Support a charity with a walk-a-thon or 5K run, and start a training group to increase fitness levels
  • Ask your employees what they feel would help them stay healthy and come up with creative wellness solutions together

While the changes in healthcare may be substantial and expensive, getting the right kind of help will make all the difference for your company.


Mark Griffin is founder and Chief Consultant at In His Name HR LLC. He has over 20 years of HR experience. Check out his Christian Career Coaching Page here.  Follow Mark on FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.