This Week's Herman Trend Alert

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  Press Release
For Immediate Release
Contact: Roger Herman

Vast Majority Of Older People Are Working:
95.7% of Those In The Age 65+ Workforce Are Working

"Retirement, as we have known it for the past couple of generations, is gone," says Roger Herman, a workforce trends expert. "People are not going to retire the same way anymore. They will move into phased retirement, gradually working fewer and fewer hours. Some will not end full-time employment for years to come."

As a futurist, Herman, CEO of The Herman Group of Greensboro, North Carolina, has forecasted that people will continue to work through their sixties and into their seventies, eighties, and even nineties. "This is not a phenomenon of the future," he explains; "it's already happening. People today are working into their later years."

Figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics verify Roger Herman's assertion. January 2004 numbers reflect that:

  • Of the 4,864,000 people in the over-65 workforce (those willing and able to work), 4,657,000 (95.7%) of them are still working.

  • 2,550,000 people over 65 are working full-time and 2,107,000 are working part-time (less than 35 hours a week).

Breaking the statistics down even further:

  • There are 2,705,000 people in the labor pool (working or seeking work) in the 65 to 69 age range, with 2,614,000 (96.6%) working.

  • Of the workforce in the 70 to 74 age range, 1,156,000 of the 1,208,000 (95.6%) in the labor pool are working.

  • In the 75 and over age range, there are 888,000 in the labor pool. An astonishing 472,000 (53.2%) are working full-time and 416,000 (46.8%) are working part-time.

  • There are 319,000 in the 80+ age range workforce, with 309,000 (96.9%) of them working.

"The demand for older workers will increase over the next few years, says Herman, "as employers seek mature, experienced, reliable, and stable employees to form the core of their workforce. Younger workers will be changing jobs more frequently, while older employees will remain at their posts."

Noting that some commentators attribute the current and future labor shortages to the Baby Boomer generation, Herman notes that "the first wave of the Baby Boomers won't even hit 65 until 2011." As the composition of the workforce continues to change, older workers will play an increasingly significant role. Their values emphasize the importance of being productive members of society, driving them to continue working-at some level-as long as they are able.

The Herman Group is a firm of consulting futurists concentrating on workforce and workplace trends and their implications. Emphasis is placed on employee selection and retention as critical strategies. Included in the firm are researchers, professional speakers, authors, and consultants. The Herman Group is based in Greensboro, NC, with affiliates in Sao Paulo, Melbourne, Hong Kong, and Port Louis, Mauritius. Contact Joyce Gioia-Herman at 336-210-3548 or e-mail:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

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