Gone are the days where retirement means leaving the workforce forever, because baby boomers are changing the landscape of retirement in America. While millennials may have taken the workforce by storm in recent years, it’s hard to deny the positive impact boomers have on the corporate world. In fact, so many companies are taking note of the great contributions that boomers have made to their bottom line that they are creating post-retirement programs to keep boomers working after retirement.
In a recently published New York Times article titled, “Boomerang Boom: More Firms Tapping the Skills of the Recently Retired,” they coin the term “boomerang retirees” to describe this surprising new workplace trend. Boomerang retirees are “people who exit gracefully after their career at a company, then return shortly afterward to work there part time.”
Going Back To Work After Retirement
Baby boomers make up the 76.4 million Americans who were born between 1946 and 1964. With their reputation as a generation willing to work hard for their money, it’s no surprise that baby boomers represent roughly 70 percent of disposable income in the U.S. But with the rise of health care costs and a loss of savings during the Great Recession, many boomers can no longer afford to retire at 62 and live a leisurely life in a warm place.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics have found that the number of seniors in the workplace has doubled since the 1990’s and is expected to continue to grow through 2022. In the past, the only type of available work for retirees was largely volunteer opportunities, but employers are starting to see the intrinsic value in keeping senior employees around. The New York Times pointed out that perhaps the most important factor at play here is that “management realizes that the biggest value of boomerangs lies in teaching the formal and informal ropes of the business to newer generations of workers.”
Benefits of Working After Retirement
There are many additional benefits to going back to work after retirement, aside from keeping a regular paycheck and having somewhere to go every day. Here are the top five reasons you should consider working after retirement:
- Medical Care. Upon retirement, you typically lose your employer-provided health benefits and have to purchase your own insurance or sign up for a Medicare plan. While either of these options will suffice when it comes to paying for affordable medical care, the truth of the matter is that employee provided medical plans are usually cheaper and more comprehensive.
- Continued Contributions to Retirement Funds. If your 401k is lacking, or if your pension plan isn’t as robust as you were hoping it would be upon retirement, you are not alone. The cost of living continues to increase, along with the price of health care, making it difficult to properly save for retirement. Many seniors experience anxiety about running out of money, so continuing to work after retirement can help reduce some of that financial stress.
- Socialize Regularly. Dangerous side effects of aging include isolation and loneliness, which can increase the risk of early mortality by 30 percent. Continuing to work in an office, even if only on a part-time basis, helps to combat isolation by forcing you into social interactions everyday. In doing so, you may also help to ward off your risk of Alzheimer’s disease, as socialization has been proven to keep the brain sharp.
- Higher Social Security Payments. The way Social Security was designed, the longer you wait to claim your checks, the more money you will receive. The earliest you can start receiving Social Security payments is age 62, at which point you would only get 75% of your monthly benefit. If you wait until age 66, however, you would receive 100% of the benefits.
- More Self-Esteem. Many people define themselves by their life’s work, so giving it up can lead to a crisis of conscience. By working after retirement, you can create a flexible schedule to give you the best of both worlds. Remaining at work after you retire can keep you feeling good about yourself while you also have the freedom to explore what you truly want to pursue once you are finally done working.
Supporting Boomers In The Workplace
Work for retirees has many positive benefits that can keep you mentally, physically and emotionally strong as you age. Medical Guardian is a proud supporter of Boomers in the workplace--in fact, many of our Life Safety Consultants are Baby Boomers. Call today to chat with one of them!