Older workers look to shift careers and stay in employment longer

More than half of today’s older employees do not expect to give up work entirely, research has revealed.

A poll by HSBC of 2,000 workers aged over 50 found that 55% said they did not anticipate that they would stop working, with the majority blaming the need to earn extra cash during their retirement.

The study follows the Government’s decision to scrap the default retirement age from 1 October 2011 and shows that employees wish to stay in work longer. It found that one-third of older workers had changed career – with the figure rising to 41% among 60- to 70-year-olds – in order to stay in work.

The largest reason for the change in careers was because of redundancy, although many also said they wanted a new challenge.

David Wells, head of pensions, savings and investments at HSBC, said: “As the requirement for people to work longer becomes more apparent it appears that the over-50s are embracing this head on and pursuing the careers they have always wanted.

“Many it seems are doing this to fill a shortfall in retirement income, but equally many are looking to embrace new skills and challenges that may now only become possible after careful financial planning during their earlier working life.”

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