Half of organisations face brain drain challenges and key skills loss as employees retire
- 82% of employers offering pre-retirement support agree that it successfully aids knowledge transfer to others to help avoid brain drain
- 22% of employees facing retirement would consider delaying retirement if they had better access to retraining/skills development
- 22% wish they’d received access to later-stage career planning earlier in their careers
- However, just over 11% of those facing retirement have received later-stage career development opportunities
49% of organisations say they face challenges around brain drain and the loss of key skills as employees retire, according to a new study by Renovo, specialists in supporting employers and employees through redundancy and retirement planning.
The research highlighted a major issue within organisations – not offering pre-retirement support and reskilling opportunities to employees. Even though 22% of employees facing retirement would consider delaying it if they had better access to retraining, less than four in 10 (37%) employers are upskilling employees later in their career and just over a third (35%) of employers offer late-stage skills development as part of their pre-retirement support.
This issue occurs in spite of the fact that employee retirement habits are changing, with 54% of employers agreeing that more employees are delaying retirement, while 55% agree that more employees are opting for gradual retirement.
Initial survey questions were completed by 629 HR professionals and company directors. Of those surveyed, 253 respondents currently provide pre-retirement support to employees. Of 986 employees surveyed, 256 have utilised pre-retirement support from their employer within the last 5 years.
Chris Parker, Managing Director of Renovo, explains:
“It is evident that employee habits are changing, which in many ways should have reduced the impact of brain drain. However, many employers are still facing those issues, yet are not proactively helping mitigate the risks nor retaining key talent. While 22% of employees wish they’d received access to later-stage career planning earlier in their career, just over 11% have received that kind of career development opportunity.”
The research also shows that employees would consider delaying retirement if offered further incentives – 54% wished to have access to more flexible working options, 39% wished they had the opportunity to work remotely, 12% wished they had increased promotional opportunities, while 17% wished they had an ability to mentor and support others. Encouragingly, over half (52%) of employers agree that more employees approaching retirement are mentoring other employees.
“Providing pre-retirement support and reskilling opportunities earlier in people’s careers offers huge benefits both for the organisation and for the employee. Employers can benefit from employees that have a clear plan for the later stages of their careers and are motivated around those plans. That, in turn, can lead to much more visibility in regard to succession planning with employees able to be much more transparent with their employer about their intentions and enable open dialogue between them. It’s encouraging to see that 82% of employers offering pre-retirement support agree that it successfully supports knowledge transfer to others to help avoid brain drain.
“For the employee, this kind of support enables them to take control of the later stages of their careers, really think about their options as they approach retirement and make plans to sustain a happy and healthy phased end to their working life.”