Australia’s ageing workforce presents both a challenge and a risk to employers. In the last decade, the number of people aged between 55 and 59 has almost doubled and 25% of Australians aged between 65 and 69 are still working.
It is expected that in the next decade 80% of growth within the Australian workforce is expecetd to be among those over 45 years of age. For this reason, it is important employers understand the impacts an ageing workforce has on their business, not only from a productivity and safety perspective, but from a long term business viability perspective.
Whilst the research is unclear about the full impacts that an ageing workforce will have on safety and workers’ compensation, from our experience many organisations have not assessed the risk this presents to their organisation and how equipped they are in dealing with it. On balance, it seems inevitable that workers compensation costs will increase as a result of workforce ageing and the increase in the retirement age. However the extent of this impact will vary from organisation to organisation.