Fulfilling work: What do older workers value about work and why?
This evidence briefing identifies the characteristics of work that are important to people aged 50 and over, and explores actions employers can take to attract and retain them.
Factors that make work fulfilling for older workers are largely the same as they are for other ages.
Older workers look for employment that is personally meaningful, flexible, intellectually stimulating, sociable, age-inclusive and offers any adjustments needed for health conditions and disabilities.
Older workers are more likely to stay in work if they think that their work matters, their employer supports them and their needs are taken seriously. They value opportunities for learning, mentoring others and career progression. These factors support a positive work-life balance and strengthen connections to employers, colleagues and customers. Fulfilling work helps to promote self-esteem, confidence, engagement and performance. The principles for managing older workers effectively are the same as for staff of any age.
It is important that line managers are properly trained to manage individuals and teams fairly, and that policies such as flexible working are available and promoted positively to all staff. Older workers should have the same access to training, progression, mentoring or leadership as workers of other ages.