Shane freeman

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Grey Matters: engaging and retaining mature age workforce

Success depends on attracting and maintaining mature age talent at ANZ

* Attracting and retaining our ageing workforce means we have access to a larger talent pool, and are better placed to understand and respond to the needs of customers and communities

* In the words of one ANZ employee:

“age diversity allows allemployees to gain an insight into different values/views on many issues and should be strongly encouraged. This will be increasingly important for ANZ as the population (and client base) ages if we are to satisfy employees/clients and shareholders over the long term”

Ageing workforce will create a labour shortage

* In approximately 15 years the number of people retiring will exceed thoseentering the labour force.

* The oldest baby boomer (aged 59) is now at the age of retirement. Australians currently retire on average at the age of 58 (Australian Bureau of Statistics)

* The most rapid change is predicted to occur between 2011 and 2031 as the baby boom generation (those born between 1946 – 1965) move out of the labour force and into retirement (COTA National SeniorsMedia Release, April 2005)

Why attracting and retaining mature age workers matters to an organisation

* Retention: workers aged 55-69 stay in their jobs longer than their younger colleagues. Only 5 percent of those in the 55-69 bracket will change job in any given year compared to 25 percent of workers aged 20-25 (Diversity@Work)

* Reduced Absenteeism: people over the age of 45 takefewer sick days. Diversity@Work (1998) study revealed that only 14 percent of all employees absent on sick leave belonged to the over 55 age group

* Based on the benefits older workers accrue in relation to training and recruitment investments, which exceed costs of turnover and absenteeism. Research undertaken by Business, Work and Ageing (BWA), estimate a net human resource management costbenefit of $1,956 per annum for each worker aged 45 plus compared to the rest of the workforce.

We need to find ways to bolster workforce participation rates for the over 50s

* In Australia 49 per cent of 55-64-year-olds are in the workforce, compared with 59 per cent in the United States, 60 per cent in New Zealand and up to 65 per cent in Scandinavia (Sydney Morning Herald, 2 October2002, p.4)

* Australian Bureau of Statistics in 2003-04 showed that most men (87%) aged 45-54 years were participating in the labour force, as were 73% of women in this age group. Participation rates were lower for older age groups. For those aged 60-64 years the participation rates for men and women were 51% and 28% respectively (Australian Bureau of Statistics)

* In 2003-04 peopleaged 45-64 years made up almost a third (32%) of the labour force (Diversity at Work)

* In 2006 30% of ANZ workforce consists of employees aged 45 and over. Reflecting the Australian demographic

ANZ’s age diversity strategy

Aim: to create a culture where “age is no barrier” in order to:
* retain skills and experience at ANZ
* increase ANZ’s talent pool, by moreeffectively reaching the mature workers market
* achieve greater customer intimacy through better reflecting the age profile of our customers and our community
* enhance our corporate reputation through our people commitment, and our work in the financial fitness

Cultural shifts to attract and retain mature age talent:

* Challenge employee expectations of early retirement
*Challenge the relationship between hours at work/tenure and performance
* Challenge the culture that equates age with lesser contribution
* Challenge the culture that treats the lifestyle needs of its employees as personal (not company) business

CEO ownership:
* John McFarlane champions and advocates age diversity as good business practice
* John’s overarching message is that ANZ...
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