Alongside today’s sixth annual Future of Ageing conference, the International Longevity Centre UK (ILC) are launching a consultation paper on the key challenges facing ageing workforces across the world.
Research by ILC, the UK’s specialist think tank on the impact of longevity on society, has found that across the G20, 1 in 3 workers is aged 50 and over, and this is set to increase to 4 in 10 in the next 20 years.
Alongside other changes, such as the growing role of technology and AI in the workplace and new forms of flexibility brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, population ageing will fundamentally reshape the workplace of the future, the consultation paper argues.
Seeking input from policy experts, industry leaders, start-ups and community organisations across the world, this paper will form the basis of the international Work for tomorrow innovations competition, which will seek to identify and reward the most promising innovations responding to an ageing workforce.
The Work for tomorrow competition, supported by the Innovation Resource Center for Human Resources (IRC4HR®), will open for submissions from innovators across the world from early 2021, across 4 challenge areas:
- Maintaining good physical and mental health
- Building knowledge, skills and competence
- Addressing discrimination and supporting diversity in the workplace
- Adapting the workplace for flexibility
Lily Parsey, Global Policy and Influencing Manager at ILC argued:
“As countries across the world age, we are not just going to lead longer, but also changing working lives. This won’t affect older workers alone, but workers of all ages and will change the way we plan the future of work for young and old alike.”
“Some of these changes are already underway – 1 in 3 workers across the G20 is already aged 50+, we are already seeing the role of technology and AI reshaping the types of work we do, and COVID-19 has fast-tracked business across the world in embracing more flexible working patterns.”
“There’s a big role for innovation to ensure our workplaces and practices adapt in pace with these changes around us. We are still seeing far too many people pushed out of the workforce early as a result of poor health, caring responsibilities they can’t reconcile with busy working lives or age discrimination. An ageing workforce could yield a significant longevity dividend, but only if we adapt to new ways of working.”
Jodi Starkman, Executive Director of IRC4HR argued:
“Our research programmes reflect a belief that when you design work and work environments that are inclusive, everyone benefits. Technology is transforming how we work and how we live, and will continue to augment human experience and capabilities, providing incredible opportunities for every member of the workforce. From flexible work arrangements to rapid digital transformation to an increased focus on employee wellbeing, the global pandemic has demonstrated that when we challenge our assumptions and beliefs about what is possible – and we apply technology and policy to address a diverse set of human needs – the result is a more inclusive workplace.”
“An innovation competition is a creative and scalable vehicle for identifying solutions and changing the narrative around what is possible. We are excited to be supporting ILC in this important work.”