Managing the aging workforce: status quo and implications for the advancement of theory and practice

Human Resource Management International Digest

ISSN: 0967-0734

Article publication date: 18 July 2008

Keywords

Citation

Strebq, C.K. (2008), "Managing the aging workforce: status quo and implications for the advancement of theory and practice", Human Resource Management International Digest, Vol. 16 No. 5. https://doi.org/10.1108/hrmid.2008.04416ead.010

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited


Managing the aging workforce: status quo and implications for the advancement of theory and practice

Article Type: From: Human Resource Management International Digest, Volume 16, Issue 5

Strebq C.K., Voelpel S.C., Leibold M. European Management Journal (UK), February 2008, Vol. 26 No. 1, Start page: 1, No. of pages: 10

Purpose – Identifies factors associated with managing an aging workforce. Design/methodology/approach – Cites several international and national surveys in emphasizing increase in the world population’s average age, outlines issues such as loss of knowledge when aging employees retire, increased sick absence, age stereotyping, workforce age diversity and reduced ability to perform physical tasks, mentions retention of talented younger employees, and comments on human resource management issues of knowledge transfer, preparation for retirement, flexible attendance patterns and retraining, contending that a mature workforce can be as competitive as a younger one. Bases the paper on a literature review and interviews with HR managers of 19 companies, looks at articles published by journals in the Financial Times Top 40 list, and explores managerial attitudes/mindset toward older employees, knowledge management and learning, health management, work environment and ergonomics, and human resource management, covering older employees’ attitudes to work and ethics, organizational attitudes towards older employees, older employees ability to learn new skills, and the physical performance of older employees. Findings – Confirms earlier scientific and managerial papers’ findings that an aging workforce is just as productive as a younger one, notes a shortage of studies of older employees’ health management, and calls for development of HR tools and techniques for maximizing the advantages of an older workforce. Originality/value – Advice/information for all organizations .ISSN: 0263-2373 Reference: 37AF234

Keywords: Older employees, Human resource management, Productivity rate, WH Smith, Demographics