Keeping Older Workers In The Workplace: Ipsos Reid Survey for RBC

Extended Health Care (60%) Tops The List Of Desired Benefits

April 15, 2008, Toronto, ON – It appears that health assurances are the best thing an employer can offer older workers to keep them in the workplace. According to a recent poll conducted by Ipsos Reid on behalf of RBC, six in ten (60%) Canadians over the age of 55 say that extended health care benefits are the most important factor ( top three mentions) in deciding to stay in the workforce. Other popular options include flexible work hours (47%), having a guaranteed salary (34%), and phasing in the retirement process (24%).

As well, Canadians over the age of 55 like their downtime, saying they would want an average of 6.4 weeks of vacation per year. Thinking about what hours they would want to work, it appears that the general consensus is a workweek running from Tuesday to Thursday, working nine to noon each day.

Thinking about what might cause them to delay retirement, nearly half (49%) believe they need the money and don�t have enough saved. Four in ten (42%) say they want to stay active and keep challenging themselves mentally. One in four older workers (24%) indicate they enjoy the social part of their job, while one in five workers (21%) suggest they love their job and don�t want to stop working.

It seems that a good number of Canada�s older workers simply don�t want to leave the workforce, as over half (54%) say they plan on working with their current employer past the age of 65. Of those planning to work past the age of 65, one in four workers (26%) say they plan on working full-time for as long as possible, while another four in ten (36%) would like to work full-time for a few years, before scaling back to part-time work. Four in ten (38%) would prefer to switch to part-time work after the age of 65. On average, Canadian workers who are planning on working with their current employer past retirement age will work there for another 3.5 years.

Two in three (67%) workers over the age of 55 would prefer to move to a different job with their current employer, rather than switching employers completely. As well, while one in five (22%) Canadian workers who are eligible for retirement in ten years or less would phase in their retirement gradually, one in four workers (26%) would choose to retire and work on a contractual basis.

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of RBC from 11/05 to 11/15, 2007. This online survey of 2,052 adult Canadian workers was conducted via the Ipsos I-Say Online Panel, Ipsos Reid’s national online panel.

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