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Seeking resources: predicting retirees' return to their workplace

Marjorie Armstrong‐Stassen (Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Windsor, Canada)
Francine Schlosser (Odette School of Business, University of Windsor, Windsor, Canada)
Deborah Zinni (Brock University, St Catharines, Canada)

Journal of Managerial Psychology

ISSN: 0268-3946

Article publication date: 10 August 2012




This study aims to employ a resource‐oriented theoretical perspective to examine retirees' desire to return to their former organization.


Using a cross‐sectional field study design, data were collected from 243 retirees under 65 years of age who had been retired from a career job less than ten years.


Regression results indicate that retirees who had experienced financial and pervasive role loss as well as retirees who perceived a higher fit with their former organization and the availability of desired job role options expressed significantly greater interest in returning. Retirees who experienced gains in leaving work as well as gains in their life satisfaction following retirement reported significantly less interest in returning to their former organization.

Research limitations/implications

The cross‐sectional design and self‐report data create a potential for bias. Even though the findings are based on respondents' “interest” in returning to their former organization, it is not known if they actually did return.

Practical implications

Programs should focus on creating an environment that values older workers, and provides them with opportunities such as mentoring other workers.

Social implications

Policy changes are needed to ensure that returning to work following retirement results in resource gains and not resource losses.


This study uses resource theory with a diverse sample of retirees and considers their desire to return to their original employers, thus adding value to human resources and management who wish to retain or re‐engage their own knowledgeable retirees.



Armstrong‐Stassen, M., Schlosser, F. and Zinni, D. (2012), "Seeking resources: predicting retirees' return to their workplace", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 27 No. 6, pp. 615-635.



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