Creative employers solve age-old conflict

first_img Comments are closed. Pastgenerations saw their ancestors work until they dropped. Today’s generationhave made it quite clear they are not prepared to accept the same deal,however, planning to retire early to enjoy the good life. Butwith changing demographics, lifestyles and poor pension provision, theseambitious plans have little chance of materialising. Employers,faced with an ageing population, need to find ways of keeping us in work.Employees, many having families later in life, need to find ways of earning forlonger. And staff with no family ties need to find ways of funding theirlifestyles into old age. Facedwith the increasing costs of pension provision and poor performance of pensionfunds, both need to find ways of getting the best value out of their investment.Escalatingcosts of pension schemes are forcing employers to close their final salaryschemes. Those who recognise the need to continue to provide an acceptablepension have opened up either a career-average revalued earnings scheme ordefined contribution scheme – meaning they can lower their contribution,provide a reasonable employee benefit and manage the long-term risk of theirschemes by shifting some of it to the employee. Aneven bigger challenge is the retention of experienced staff. Those who want tocarry on working are making ever-increasing demands on employers to help findwork-life balance.Whileexisting legislation can be used as an excuse not to do anything creative, betteremployers are breaking new ground – either removing or extending theirretirement ages, introducing career breaks and flexible working practices foreveryone. They are seeing a rise in both new graduates and staff over 50 andbenefiting from reduced turnover and training costs.Withage discrimination looming in 2006, the more creative employers will benefitfrom valuing ability rather than age and will have trialled many of the newways of working that will be forced upon us in the future.Ifyou have already made these changes and feel confident enough to wait for theinevitable, think again. What about your age and service-related benefits suchas holidays, absence and redundancy payments – not forgetting your position onsalary management, pay progression and training policies. Claims for direct orindirect discrimination await for your decision.Marks& Spencer won the Department for Work and Pensions Award for Age Positiveat Work at the Personnel Today Awards 2002 for removing the mandatory retirementage of 65, allowing valued employees to continue working on the same terms andconditions of employment. This helps us retain experienced people and thatmakes good business sense. DeniseKeating, Head of people proposition, Marks &Spencer Creative employers solve age-old conflictOn 19 Nov 2002 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Articlelast_img read more

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