If you don't mind, it doesn't matter" Mark Twain (1835-1910)
Organisations have already begun to experience the effects of a shifting age profile, with rapid ageing of the workforce since the early 1990s. Many older workers are making valuable contributions in the workplace and the community. Older workers are choosing to work if the conditions are right. Some of the common reasons for delaying retirement include financial pressures, social interaction and wanting to use their skills and experience.
Longer and healthier lives, changes in work design, and technology enhancements create opportunities for innovation and flexibility so people can continue to be productive and make a contribution through work, regardless of age.
The trend towards a longer working life is one organisations should embrace and support. Participation and engagement of all generations at work is essential for dynamic and productive workplaces, and for organisational performance and excellence in delivery of services. Government expects the public service to take the lead in realising the potential of senior Australians through work.
The opportunity—a Statement of Commitment to Investing in Experience
A strong leadership commitment is required to promote, support and enable workforce age diversity. Setting the ‘tone at the top’ and applying an integrated approach is required to embed age diversity within workforces and workplaces.
The Work Ability and Ageing Framework for Action (PDF, 1.5 MB), highlights what needs to be considered—workforce planning, health and safety, skills and human capital development.
Investing in Experience: Working for Today and Tomorrow (PDF, 2.0 MB), takes the framework and translates it into practical action—the things that can be done to respond effectively to the challenge faced by organisations.
The Statement of Commitment to Investing in Experience is a tool senior leaders can use to demonstrate and guide their commitment to embracing age diversity. It is a key component of Investing in Experience designed to ‘set the tone at the top’.
Leadership Commitment is about recognising the challenge, making a commitment to tackling it, and translating this ambition into practical action. Investing in Experience offers the pathway to change.