Business Champion for Older Workers: Strategy and 2022 Target

A million more older workers by 2022

In September 2016, the Government appointed the Business in the Community Age at Work Leadership Team, led by Andy Briggs, CEO of Aviva UK Life, as Business Champion for Older Workers. The role is an opportunity to support employers adapt to the needs of our ageing population through better retention, retraining and recruiting of older workers.

To address the widening skills gap, tackle age bias in work and enable people to stay in work longer, every UK employer needs to increase the number of workers aged 50-69 in the UK by 12% by 2022. The target is aimed at supporting older people who want the same range of options and opportunities as younger colleagues, and to be recognised for their experience and expertise. In recognising the skills older people bring to the workplace, employers will benefit from the breadth and depth of their knowledge.

Why your business needs to take action on age at work 
Our population is ageing, and people are living longer. There are currently 11 million people aged 65+ in the UK, and this is expected to grow to 19 million by 2050. This growth will impact the economy, society, and the workplace. Employers are also starting to face skills shortages. By 2022, 14.5 million more jobs will be created, but only 7 million younger workers will enter the workforce – this represents a 7.5 million gap.  Our research found a Missing Million older people who want to work out of work.  For the majority, working longer brings identity, status, financial stability and social engagement opportunities. 

  • If the employment rate of people aged 50-64 matched that of those aged 35-49, it would add more than 5% to UK GDP, or £88 billion.
  • By 2020 the over 50s will comprise almost one-third of the working age population and almost half of the adult population.
  • The UK employment rate at aged 50 is 83%, dropping to 64% at aged 60.

While many organisations already recognise the skills and experience of older workers, working to retain existing talent and bias proofing recruitment procedures and job adverts, the economy will only benefit if action is taken across the whole of UK business.

We provide employers with the practical guidance and support they need to take action. Our guides are designed to support employers in achieving their 12% target, by understanding their workforce profile, listening to what their older employees need and taking action to improve their retention and recruitment of older workers. 

Business in the Community Diversity Benchmark including Age
This is a continuous benchmarking service. There is no submission deadline. Instead, participants have the flexibility to benchmark whenever best suits their internal processes.  The Age Benchmark section is free for any employer - and they will receive a data report that benchmarks their score and data against sector peers, public and private sector participants, and all benchmark participants. 
Find out more about the Benchmark >>

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