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Article
Publication date: 7 August 2017

Carsten Christoph Schermuly, Victoria Büsch and Carolin Graßmann

The desired retirement age (DRA) becomes more important because some countries adapt their strict retirement regulations to it. A process is tested for how psychological…

Abstract

Purpose

The desired retirement age (DRA) becomes more important because some countries adapt their strict retirement regulations to it. A process is tested for how psychological empowerment influences the DRA mediated by psychological and physical strain and how the DRA is connected to the expected retirement age (ERA). The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

Structured interviews with 1,485 German employees (55 years and older) were conducted via telephone.

Findings

Psychological and physical strain mediated both the relationship between psychological empowerment and the DRA. DRA and ERA were positively associated. The control variables – age, net income, and organizational size – also significantly affected the DRA.

Research limitations/implications

The results are only valid for the German job market. All variables were collected at one measurement point.

Practical implications

The strengthening of psychological empowerment can be one measure to motivate older employees to delay their retirement and finally keep them longer in the labor force.

Originality/value

A large sample was collected and interviewed via telephone, which helps to overcome some limitations of questionnaire research. The process model helps to understand how job characteristics are connected with the DRA and the ERA.

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