Promoting an Age-Inclusive Workforce

Living, Learning and Earning Longer

OECD Directorate of Employment with IES contributions from Newton B, Bevan S, Vanderleyden J  |   | OECD | Dec 2020

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This report debunks several myths and demonstrates the positive impact of age diversity and inclusion on a firm’s long-term competitive growth and organisational resilience. It builds on a unique collaboration between OECD, AARP and the World Economic Forum, which has engaged more than 50 global employers – representing over 2 million employees and USD 1 trillion in annual revenue. The report presents evidence on promising approaches, practical examples and ideas for successful multigenerational workplaces and provides a checklist on what employers can do to support and sustain age-friendly workplaces.

People are living and working longer than ever before, with four to five generations working side by side. This reflects the positive sides of population ageing and brings big opportunities for business, workers and society. It is estimated that building multigenerational workforces and giving older employees greater opportunities to work could raise GDP per capita by 19% over the next three decades.  And contrary to common perceptions, novel evidence across OECD countries shows that older workers can boost firm productivity not only through their own experience and know-how, but also by enhancing team performance via age and skill complementarities between younger and older workers. However, this requires the right policies and practices from employers, governments and through social dialogue to ensure that the benefits of a multigenerational workforce are fully realised.