We are all living for longer, which means, for the majority of us, we will also be working for a greater length of time. By 2049, it is projected that there will be an increase of almost 197,000 people aged 50 and over living in Northern Ireland when compared to 2019 figures (Office for National Statistics 2016). That equates to over half the population of Belfast.

At the same time, fewer children are being born. This means that the population profile of the UK is undergoing a dramatic shift as the total number of younger people compared to older people becomes similar, and people are living longer.

This means that there will be fewer young job candidates joining the job market and significantly more people retiring later in life, thus a greater number of workers who are over 60 years of age. It is therefore vitally important that businesses support older workers to remain or return to work.
This Age at Work project aims to:

  • Encourage and support businesses to be more age-inclusive in retaining, retraining and recruiting older workers
  • Raise awareness of the impact of an ageing workforce and the need for an age-inclusive agenda in government, business and wider society
  • Support more older workers to remain or return to work

All aspects of Age at Work are free of charge to all businesses and the project offers a range of tools and services that help support businesses be more age inclusive, these include:

  • Age Inclusive Employer Toolkit: the Toolkit provides a guide for employers to support staff over the age of 50 in relation to Financial Wellbeing, Health & Wellbeing, Work-life Balance and Workplace Practices
  • Age Inclusive Business Audit – this tool is a self-assessment and has been developed to help businesses identify gaps in relation to being an age-inclusive and age-friendly employer
  • Learning Network – Business in the Community will select 15 business per year, that complete the Age Inclusive Business Audit, to take part in a Learning Network. The Learning Network will bring HR and Equality professionals together to learn and share best practice from each other.
  • Mid-Career Review – this three hour workshop can be arranged at your premises to help support staff to forward plan for a longer working life
  • Still Ready for Work – this is a short employability programme to support participants aged 50+ to return to work. The programme consists of several elements including training and up to a 2-week placement. Businesses that can provide between 5 to 15 placements will receive a bespoke Still Ready for Work programme to suit their business needs.

Contact: Eamon Clarke

For more information on the Mid-Career Review, contact Age NI at www.ageni.org/ageatwork