Tuesday to Thursday - nine to noon: ideal work week for
older workers according to RBC workplace survey
TORONTO, April 15, 2008 — If companies are looking
to retain older workers, they are going to have to offer perks
such as shorter work weeks and flexible hours, according to
a workplace survey from RBC. And it appears that, of those
surveyed, employed Canadians who are 55 years of age and older
would prefer to work Tuesday through Thursday and work mainly
in the morning from nine to noon.
"With unemployment levels at an all time low, good employees
are harder to find. Older workers are becoming an integral
part of the Canadian workforce and employers need to look
at ways of retaining and attracting them," said Christianne
Paris, vice-president, Recruitment and Learning, RBC. "Employers
may have to alter the work environment or their recruitment
profiles to suit older workers who are looking for more flexibility
in their lives as they either transition into retirement or
look to come back into the workforce."
Conducted by Ipsos Reid and titled The Competition for
Canadian Talent, the RBC survey found there are several
key factors that employers need to keep in mind to attract
and retain older employees from leaving the workforce. Extended
health care benefits (60 per cent) is the top factor, followed
by flexible work hours (47 per cent), having a guaranteed
wage/salary (34 per cent) and phasing in the retirement process
(24 per cent). In addition, employed Canadians age 55 and
older also would like to have 6.4 weeks of vacation a year.
The survey also found that even though four in ten Canadians
still plan to take full retirement when eligible, many older
employees have changed their attitude towards retirement.
While 22 per cent would like to phase retirement in gradually,
more than a quarter (26 per cent) would like to retire and
work on a contractual basis.
However, 36 per cent of those 55 and older are only looking
to work full-time for a few years and then scale back to part-time
hours or retire fully while 38 per cent would prefer to work
part-time for their current employer as they transition into
retirement. Two-thirds of employed Canadians 55 and older
would prefer to stay with their current employer and change
jobs, rather than work for another company.
The survey also uncovered that older workers still feel a
strong sense of loyalty to their existing employers, as more
than a quarter of those surveyed would continue to work full-time
as long as they could with their current employer. On average,
older employed Canadians are looking to work with their current
employer for 3.5 more years past their retirement date.
In looking at some possible reasons why older workers would
delay retirement, almost half (49 per cent) believe that they
need the money and don't have enough saved to retire while
42 per cent want to stay mentally challenged and active. Almost
one quarter (24 per cent) enjoy the social part of working,
while 21 per cent love their job and don't want to retire.
"According to Statscan, just over two million Canadians
age 55 to 64 were employed in 2006, 43 per cent more than
in 2001," said Paris. "With more older workers postponing
retirement, the new multi-generational workforce presents
both challenges and opportunities that employers will need
These are some of the findings of an RBC poll conducted by
Ipsos Reid between November 5 and November 15, 2007. The online
survey is based on randomly selected representative sample
of 2,052 Canadian full and part-time workers. With a representative
sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to
within ±2.2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20,
of what they would have been had the entire adult Canadian
population been polled. These data were statistically weighted
to ensure the sample's regional and age composition reflects
that of the actual employed Canadian population according
to the 2006 Census data.
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For more information, please contact:
Jackie Braden, RBC Media Relations, 416-974-2124