Workplace Preparedness for an Ageing Workforce: A Case Study

Valerie Egdell, Gavin Maclean, Tao Chen, Robert Raeside

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract


Design/methodology/approach:
A questionnaire survey of workplaces was undertaken in the Fife region of Scotland, which in economic and demographic terms is representative of wider Scotland and other nations in Northern Europe. Descriptive analysis was undertaken to give insight into concerns and actions taken regarding ageing workforces.
Purpose:
For many nations, their workforces are ageing. The motivation of this paper is to explore the concerns and attitudes of employers to employing older workers and what information they require.

Findings:
Most workplaces perceive more advantages to employing older workers than challenges. Many have adapted training and work practices, but many have not. The majority surveyed believe that existing policies and strategies are sufficient. This points to the need for national and local government and employer associations to become more active to persuade workplaces to better manage future workplaces.

Research Limitations/implications:
Generalisability is problematic and the small sample restricted the scope of statistical analysis.

Practical Implications:
We were unable to judge the severity of how an ageing workforce impacts on workplace performance, as employers found it difficult to conceptualise and identify the impact of ageing from market and economic pressures.

Social Implications:
Resulting from population ageing the workforce of many societies are becoming older, this will impact on workplace relations and the social identity of those over the age of fifty years.

Originality:
Little research has been undertaken to assess workplaces awareness of, and how to adapt to, an ageing workforce and research is required to inform and guide management strategy of employers.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Sociology and Social Policy
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 25 Aug 2021

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