Editorial

The Modern Middle-Age Money Crisis: What Employers Can Do

Millions of people born between the early 1960s to the late 1970s, often referred to as Generation X, are facing years of financial hardship in later life. It is reported that at least one in three are set to retire with an insignificant pension pot to support them in their later years. The pandemic only added to this growing concern, as 1.6 million people within this age category were furloughed.

Roughly 1.3 million individuals had their hours reduced as a result of the pandemic, whilst over half a million people were made redundant. This saw their incomes go and a decline in paying into their pension schemes.

With a decline in people paying into their pension pots, it is reported that 2.3 million people are yet to retire expecting to rely predominantly on the state pension fund. Currently, the state pension fund stands at a little over £9,000 a year.

Provide Support And Advice On Pensions

Employees need to remain tuned in to their workplace pension schemes. Those that are engaged in their pension scheme are often more motivated to perform well. Additionally, they are also less likely to suffer from financial stress and instead are more likely to be able to afford to retire at a time that’s right for themselves and their employer.

However, a common theme amongst the vast majority of employees, is that the topic of workplace pension schemes is often coated in mystery or covered by worry. A study around UK consumers’ mindsets found that almost a third of people (31%) were unaware of how much they have saved in their pension pots and a staggering 49% think they need to be saving more.

For many employers, knowing how to engage employees about their pensions can be challenging. It is not a topic that sparks great interest, especially to middle-aged employees who have yet to start a pension fund.

Fortunately, there are guides available that offer clear insight about things an employer can do when they are wanting to learn about how to help engage employees with pensions. Included in such guides is advice on how to encourage employees, in particular those who are classed as Generation X and have yet to start a pension fund. Whilst younger generations may not understand the importance of pensions currently, those who are middle-aged should be thinking more about their future, especially their pension fund.

Having the support of guides or even seeking external support for advice, will help you to reach all of your employees, even the ones that are difficult to reach at times.

Encourage Them To Take More Leadership Rol

Brought up in an era of social change and technological change, Generation X embraces and thrives on diversity, change, challenges, responsibility, honesty, and creative input within the workplace. Many of those in Generation X is ready to take leadership in teaching others, whilst boosting their learning. As an employer, you can assign your older staff members as leaders in charge of training processes for other employees or allowing them to lead a new project. In addition to making them feel more satisfied with their job, your company will also benefit from the new leadership that can help your business to grow and reach its next goals. By sharing the responsibilities with Generation X employees, they can help to shape your company, rewarding you with great results from their tireless efforts.

Allowing them this chance will also be a motivation booster for some employees, as many are wanting to mark on the company in some way. Set time aside to talk with them about their goals and work closely with them to fulfil the project ideas they have created and presented to you. By supporting their need to make a difference, you will re-motivate your Generation X employees as well as re-invigorate your entire team. In doing so, you will see a rise in productivity levels amongst your employees, in particular those in Generation X.

Creating Equal Opportunitie

Older workers in the UK experience age discrimination in recruitment and progression within a company. For instance, they are less likely to be offered development opportunities, compared to the younger members of the team. There is research to suggest that they are also the most likely to be stuck on low paid jobs and feel most insecure about their jobs.

As an employer, you can change work practices to create a friendly employment culture. This is essential for today’s older workers, and for younger generations, all of whom will face similar pressures as they age.

Ultimately, showing that you are there for your employees, whether it is through offering advice on their pensions, or giving them more responsibilities to showcase their skills, is one step about helping them. Whilst many companies have a younger workforce and can place emphasis on their younger members, it is important to recognise and cater to the needs of all the generations that make up the workforce. In doing so, you can ensure that nobody feels forgotten about and that everyone feels included.

 

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