SUSTAINABILITY IN EDUCATION: RETAINING AGING WORKERS AN UNTAPPED

SUSTAINABILITY IN EDUCATION: RETAINING AGING WORKERS AN UNTAPPED

SUSTAINABILITY IN EDUCATION: RETAINING AGING WORKERS AN UNTAPPED RESOURCE? Maree Liston AUSTRALIA Given the current worldwide economic pressures, how can retirees continue to contribute to the development of our workforce? To ensure a suitably prepared workforce to take us into the future, what alternate models could

be instigated to harvest the knowledge and experience draining from todays market? THE INTERGENERATIONAL REPORT 2015 A Report that assesses the long-term sustainability of current Government policies over the next 40 years. Report produced in 2002, 2007 and 2010.

(Non-political?) THE INTERGENERATIONAL REPORT 2015 (CONT) Findings: Australians will live longer. Australia ranks equal first along with Iceland in terms of male life expectancy.

Australian women have the fifth longest life expectancy after Japan, Spain, France and Italy. Male life expectancy is projected to increase to 95.1 years in 2055. Female life expectancy is projected to increase to 96.6 in 2055.

THE INTERGENERATIONAL REPORT 2015 (CONT) The number of Australians aged 65 and over will more than double by 2055. In 2055, there will be around 40,000 people aged 100 and over, three hundred times more than in 1975.

The number of people aged between 15 and 64 for every person aged 65 and over: 7.3 people in 1975 4.5 people today 2.7 people by 2055. Australias population is projected to be 39.7 million in 2055 (23.6 million at present). THE INTERGENERATIONAL REPORT 2015 (CONT)

Participation rates of those 65 and over to increase in Australia from 12.9% now to 17.3% in 2055. The report concludes Many people in older age groups continue to bring valuable skills and experience to the economy, evidenced in the recent trend of rising participation of those aged 65 and over.

This provides a significant opportunity to benefit from the wisdom and experience of older Australians, but is there more that can be done to embrace this trend? http://apo.org.au/research/2015-intergenerational-report-australia-2055 IN EUROPE Eurostats population projections: o o o

o o The number aged 80 years or above will more than double between 2013 and 2080. The old-age dependency ratio for the EU-28 1 January 2013 4 persons of working age for every person aged 65 or over. The share of those of working age will decline. The EU-28s population to increase to 525.5 million around 2050. The employment rate of workers aged 55 to 64 increased at a rapid pace despite the financial

and economic crisis. http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Population_structure_and_ageing WHAT THE AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT WILL DO: Increase the age at which citizens can claim the Age Pension. (The Age Pension is a means tested payment for people over 65.) - Increase to 67 by 2023, to 70 by 2035.

Increase the preservation age at which citizens can collect their superannuation funds from 55 to 60. AND: Endeavour to increase participation rates by females in the workforce. For example if Australias female participation rate could reach Canadas level, it is estimated that our GDP would be a permanent $25 billion higher.

Endeavour to harness the full potential of all demographic groups, especially older Australians, youth, people with disability and the longterm unemployed. In an aging population, the loss of the nations most experienced sector of the workforce could surely be minimised by capturing that experience in structured mentoring systems. MENTORING

Some Current Examples: Career choices for High School Students Career choices for University Students In the Workplace - teachers - others CAREER CHOICE FOR SCHOOL STUDENTS High School students in Tasmania: A mentoring program which assists students in low socioeconomic areas in Tasmania (struggling to meet demand).

High school students regularly meet online for an hour each week with an adult professional who can give them advice and direction. Students - the program opened their eyes about the future, and helped them move from having no idea what to do or how to go about it, to making decisions. For the mentors - the program provides the opportunity to

reflect on their own personal choices. www.abc.net.au CAREER CHOICE FOR UNIVERSITY STUDENTS Newcastle University, NSW The Lucy Mentoring Program (Increasing participation of females in the workplace) A Lucy Mentor supports a female student by sharing career-related knowledge and experience providing insights to available work opportunities, and ways to meet the challenges often

experienced by women in their chosen industry. The innovative leadership program matches female Faculty of Business and Law student mentees with mentors working within the business and law professions. http://www.newcastle.edu.au/about-uon/governance-and-leadership/faculties-and-schools/faculty-of-business-andlaw/resources/for-students/lucy-mentoring-program IN THE WORKPLACE New teachers:

Mentors in the workplace involving experienced teachers working with newer/less experienced teachers. Example - Temora High School Experienced teachers mentor trainee teachers during practicum placements. Small bonus payment earned. IN EUROPE Mentoring can involve experienced employees working with newer/less experienced employees. A Spanish study of teaching concluded coaching and mentoring on site are appropriate approaches for fostering

socio-emotional skills. Portuguese information communication technologies company - technical workers train each other in an informal way. In an agro-food company specialised employees help train staff on specialised machines. In Latvia an electrical equipment firm with 700 employees senior staff mentor and train newcomers over a three-month period. The mentors receive additional remuneration of up to 25 per cent of their regular salary. www.ncver.edu.au Innovation in teaching and learning in vocational eduation and training: International perspectives GLOBALLY Bain & Company

Management Consultants 51 offices in 33 countries. Mentoring that focusses on accelerating career progression, rather than mentoring through different life stages. Workforce is typically very young. Employees paired with a mentor who is more experienced and tenured and acts as a sounding board for short-term case goals as well as long-term career goals.

http://bain.com/about/worldwide-offices/index.aspx ISSUES FOR THE AUSTRALIAN CONTEXT Problems Falling job market Age discrimination - the Australian Government has introduced the Restart Programme which provides a clear and long-term financial incentive for employers to employ and retain older Australians. Perception that the limited job opportunities should be offered to young people trying to get started in the workforce.

Experienced workers as mentors may stifle innovation. Treat employees like they make a difference and they will. Thank you!

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