How to Get and Keep Workers Over 50

How to Get and Keep Workers Over 50

Our Group company, Towergate Health & Protection, are seeing that many UK companies are facing extraordinary difficulty in recruiting skilled staff; as the pandemic prompted a lot of people – particularly the over 50s - to reassess what was important to them, with many quitting their jobs as a result.

But now that there’s a cost-of-living crisis in the UK, conditions that are thought to have prompted people into early retirement have changed, making it much more difficult for people to keep their expected standard of living while in retirement and living off their pension.

The fact that some early retirees might need to come back into the job market is the perfect opportunity for businesses to try and attract this age group, because this demographic bring a host of benefits to the workforce:

  • Higher rates of retention – on average, older workers report higher job satisfaction and are less likely to switch jobs, saving your business money they might otherwise have spent on recruitment
  • Experience – as they’ve been in the workforce for a long time, older people are much more experienced in all factors of modern working life
  • Problem solving – similarly to the above, over 50s tend to be much more practised at solving problems in the workplace
  • New ideas and opportunities – an age-diverse workforce is important for diversity of thought in the workplace.¹

Figures released by the Office of National Statistics last year showed that of the 58% of respondents who would consider returning to work, the most important factors when choosing a paid job were flexible working hours (32%), good pay (23%), and being able to work from home (12%).²


A pay rise isn’t always possible

Enticing experienced talent to your workforce isn’t always a matter of offering a generous pay packet, though. Workers have told us as much, with research across the board revealing that employee benefits are a big consideration when an individual is preparing to accept a job offer.³

When it comes to workers over 50, they’re likely to find the most value out of the following benefits:

  • Income protection: this age group may be particularly concerned with benefits that will give their family security in the event that they contract an illness or injury. Income protection will ensure that the employee and their family are secure and can pay the bills even if they’re unable to work
  • Life assurance pays out a lump sum to the family of an individual who has died, alleviating financial pressure when they’re already going through a very difficult time.

Beyond family security, this age group will have been particularly affected by the cost-of-living crisis. Not only will some of them have been forced out of retirement, but they may also be struggling to afford health maintenance costs. The following benefits address this issue:

  • Cash plans provide partial or full reimbursement for health maintenance costs like dental check-ups, seeing the optician, physiotherapy, and more. The employer or the employee will pay a small fee each month for a policy that will help them meet their everyday health costs
  • Private medical insurance (PMI): the average person faces excessive wait times for treatment under the NHS, making PMI even more attractive than it did before. PMI allows your employees to get the help they need when they need it and skip the queues
  • Health screenings give an individual the most comprehensive view available into their health. This particular age group may find particular value in this benefit as they seek to live long and healthy lives.

Trying to make your company more attractive to your existing workers as well as prospective talent, can be a challenge. If your interested in reviewing your benefits offering, speak to your usual advisor.


¹Advantages of employing and retaining older workers | 


³half of employees would sacrifice pay for personalised benefits, report reveals | People Management