Over 50s More Likely To Be Part Time Workers
A recent report from the Office for National Statistics reveals a growing trend in part-time employment among individuals aged 50 and above.
This significant change in work and retirement patterns shows that one in four workers in their 50s now engages in part-time work.
The data highlights a record-breaking 3.6 million older people currently working part-time in the UK, marking a 12% increase since 2021 and a staggering 56% increase over the past two decades.
Further analysis by Rest Less, an advocate for the over-50s, discovered that 42% of the country’s part-time workforce comprises individuals aged 50 and older.
Interestingly, many workers aged 60-64 and over 65 also hold part-time positions, at 40% and 66%, respectively.
Additionally, men aged 66 and older increasingly opt for part-time roles, up by 22% compared to 2021 figures.
Gone are the days of traditional career paths leading to abrupt retirement.
Today’s mid-lifers increasingly prefer transitioning into retirement smoothly rather than diving headfirst into the unknown.
Rest Less CEO Stuart Lewis emphasizes that this phased approach offers various benefits for overall health, social connections, and well-being.
However, as age-inclusive policies gain traction amidst an aging population, Dr. Emily Andrews from the Centre for Ageing Better cautions that part-time work often equates to low-quality jobs.
She advises employers to create appealing part-time opportunities to draw exceptional candidates and retain experienced staff during life challenges.
Chris Walsh, the CEO of Wise Age (an over-50s employment support charity), points out that many older individuals struggle to secure full-time employment due to ageism in recruitment.
This long-term part-time work can push them into poverty. Additionally, approximately one million people are excluded from even part-time work due to various factors like pension credit or partners’ income.
Caroline Abrahams from Age UK emphasizes the importance of flexible and part-time work for older workers, but also highlights the need to combat ageism to ensure equal access to opportunities.