Phased retirement – benefits and drawbacks according to retired British employees
April 26th, 2023, Kineree Shah

Phased retirement – benefits and drawbacks according to retired British employees

The concept of phased retirement involves a variety of employment arrangements that allow workers nearing retirement age to gradually reduce their workload before transitioning from full-time work to full-time retirement. These arrangements may include a pre-retirement reduction in working hours or days, post-retirement part-time work, or job-sharing opportunities. At YouGov, we conducted a comprehensive Survey gauge the opinions of British retired employees on phased retirement. The data may serve as a valuable resource for employers and organisations seeking to understand the benefits and challenges of implementing the programme in their workforce.

According to recent survey findings, three out of five retired British employees believe that phased retirement has the potential to improve work-life balance (62%).

A nearly equal percentage of respondents also indicate that such a programme could have a positive impact (64%) on employee retention and satisfaction.

We also explored the potential drawbacks of phased retirement programs to employers and employees as perceived by British retired respondents. One-third of them say that difficulties in finding part-time replacements or job-sharing partners and the potential reduction in retirement benefits are significant challenges (33% each). Just over a quarter (28%) are concerned about the possibility of age discrimination or bias, while a quarter of the respondents consider financial implications for the employer to be an issue (25%).

Furthermore, nearly one in five (18%) feel that there could be an inequitable distribution of work among employees, and 16% are concerned about the strain on company resources such as HR, training, and management. The same percentage (16%) worry about reduced opportunities for younger employees to advance or join the organisation. Other concerns include the potential impact of company culture and team dynamics negatively (14%), legal or regulatory challenges in implementing such programmes (13%) and negative impact on career advancement opportunities (12%).

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. This study was conducted online on 18-19 April 2023 with a nationally representative sample of 551 adults in the UK (aged 18+ years), using a questionnaire designed by YouGov. Data figures have been weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race to be representative of all adults in the UK market (18 years or older) and reflect the latest ONS population estimates. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.

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