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World – ‘Working age population impacting the world of work’ Staffing Quote of the Week

World – ‘Working age population impacting the world of work’ Staffing Quote of the Week

October 17, 2018

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Alistair Cox, CEO of Hays, has issued a warning about how the rise of the working age population and retirement of highly-skilled workers is exacerbating an already acute skills shortage.

 ”As the pool of available workers ages and potentially begins to shrink, businesses will need to ensure they retain the key talent and skills already within their organisation,” Cox said.

Alistair states one of the easiest solutions would be to keep older employees working for longer. This will in part happen naturally over time, as life expectancy increases by two to three years every decade, younger sections of the workforce will be expected to work for longer compared to their older counterparts today.

“The prospect of people living much longer also calls into the question the usefulness of an official retirement or pension age and whether it is a thing of the past - policy makers may have to examine this in much closer detail in the coming years,” Cox said.

According to Hays, there is more that businesses can do to upskill workers and futureproof their skills for longer careers, as well as prepare them for ongoing technological and organisational changes. AI, machine learning and robotics are changing almost every job, meaning modern workers will experience more changes in their working life than any generation before them.

“It is up to businesses and policymakers in our time to pre-empt these changes and ensure the workplace of tomorrow is suitably prepared in order to minimise any adverse impact on businesses and the economy,” Cox said.

Cox also suggested a two-way mentoring system for organisations to facilitate the sharing of knowledge; this will also provide older workers with the opportunity to gain an understanding of newer technologies emerging in the workplace.