Baby Boomers are drastically changing the nature of today’s workforce, presenting a multitude of challenges for human resource departments and individuals. Either the workforce will become exhausted and gray as Boomers choose to remain in their positions past the age of 65 – an age that has widely been accepted as the norm for retirement. Or, more likely, future workforce demographics will see a major shift as Boomers decide to leave the workforce for post-retirement adventures. Either way, it is time for HR directors to consider these challenges and implement programs to mitigate risk.
For the first time in American history, the number of young workers entering the labor market will not replace those that are leaving. Nearly 80 million Baby Boomers will file for retirement over the next twenty years. That’s an average of 10,000 skilled workers leaving the workforce a day!
Unfortunately, acknowledging the shift in our future workforce and Baby Boomer retirement is only the first step. The real importance lies in how this issue will be addressed and whether or not the solutions will facilitate recruitment of top talent and employee retention. To remain competitive and stay afloat, companies across all industries will be tasked with the challenge of transferring critical knowledge and experiences from retiring Baby Boomers to younger employees remaining in or entering the workforce. As noted, few companies have come to terms with this demographic shift in the workforce. However, even fewer have implemented training or re-training programs that tackle this challenge and work to transfer skills, retain quality talent, and recruit top candidates.
The sad truth is that most leaders have not come to terms with how the aging workforce will impact the depth of expertise that their organization has to call upon. I predict that the nearing exodus of skilled labor from the workforce will be a tremendous wake up call for more than just HR professionals. Too many companies rely on the expectation that employees will stay or will be easily swayed to re-engage rather than taking a proactive stance to identify or replace the valuable skill sets that will soon be leaving the organization.
Luckily, it doesn’t all have to be bad. This shifting workforce provides an opportunity for companies to gain valuable insight into their vault of expertise while also identifying skill deficits to help grow your business and make smarter hiring decisions. Fortunately, we at Jobscience love keeping you in the know! Learn more about how to take advantage of the aging workforce by listening to our conversation on the changing marketplace.
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Jamie is the manager of marketing at Jobscience and recently graduated with her M.S. in Organizational Development. An innovative, vibrant, hard-working young professional who strives to further her career, explore new horizons, and face new challenges. Industrial Organizational Psychologist with a passion for developing employees, enhancing collaboration, and instituting processes that empower organizations to the highest level of performance. Connect with me on linkedin and let's chat all things talent management!Back to Recruitment blogs