A new MAXIS Global Benefits Network (MAXIS GBN) whitepaper, titled Healthy ageing in the era of an ageing global workforce, reasons that employers need to address the reality of an ageing workforce by implementing proactive strategies that address wellness throughout an employee’s career, aiming to minimise sick leave, control medical costs and limit the impact of disability as they age.
If businesses don’t adapt, encourage healthy ageing and cater for an older workforce, says MAXIS GBN, they will not only alienate an important and growing pool of skilled staff, they risk becoming uncompetitive, hampered with avoidable costs and possibly exposed to additional medical claims.
Moving away from the one-size-fits-all package
“Although older employees bring experience and plenty of positives, employers need to keep in mind their unique requirements – from HR policies and employee benefits, to pensions and medical care. Getting old is the primary risk factor for many acute and chronic health conditions, which increase medical costs and demand interventions by health providers, employers and benefits partners,” said Dr Leena Johns MD, Head of Health and Wellness at MAXIS GBN.
MAXIS GBN explains that aside from the health issues that can hurt productivity, as well as incur large costs, employers in many sectors are facing skills shortages that will likely mean they need to better cater to the 50 to 70 age group more effectively. To do this, employers need to move away from the traditional ‘one-size-fits-all package’ and offer employee benefits programmes that suit the medical, financial and lifestyle needs of their multigenerational workforces.
Dr Johns concludes: “A growing, older workforce raises significant questions for standard health benefits. As our whitepaper says, building a progressive, thoughtful approach to flexible and responsive benefits can help older employees, keeping them motivated and productive – as well as encouraging younger employees to take a proactive approach to their health and help them age more healthily.”