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People Working Longer to Reach Retirement Goals

The other day I found myself wondering why so many workers are continuing to work well past the typical retirement age of 62-66. I thought most people would prefer to retire as soon as they could and not have to deal with the stress and struggle of going to the office every day. I started reading articles about the aging and multi-generational workforce.I often think how that affects the workers in my office, as well as how it affects our clients. 

I found a Society for Human Resource article from the early part of this year that gave some interesting facts. (Information from Global Benefits Attitude Survey)

  • older worker handshake1 in 4 US workers expect to work past the age of 70                                                                               
  • 5% don’t think they will ever be able to retire


Here at EDP we have employees that are relatively new in the workforce as well as several getting close to retirement. I think the age differences only strengthen our various skills and abilities. The new-comers learn work ethic, company culture and get the advantage of people with many years of experience. The workers that have been around a while learn new strategies and new technology from the younger generation. But this made me ask, what is causing this abundance of workers that choose not to retire in their mid 60’s?

Most comment that they wish they would have had more retirement planning options throughout their working years. Others say they just want to stay active and have something to do. Many state that their financial situation has improved over the last few years but not well enough to be able to provide for themselves and their families if they retire.

Explaining HSA and FSA plans and how to work with them to receive the most benefit often leadto more employee participation. In our office, taking the time to explain what café plans are and what kind of savings they could provide, helped. Many employees have no idea what these things are and pension plans are just as misunderstood.  Employees may think you are keeping their money and they don’t get anything in return. Education on how these benefits work, and an explanation on how saving now could create an earlier retirement, is an important factor.

In a recent survey 68% of Millennials who are eligible for 401k plans said they do not take part. Once at retirement age, they could be in the same or worse situation as their older counterparts. HR departments have a big job on their hands to convince younger workers to start taking advantage of the retirement planning options now instead of waiting until they need it. 

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