The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development has responded to new figures from the Continuous Mortality Investigations Bureau, which predict an increase in male life expectancy.
The report says that the average age of mortality for wealthier males is now nearly 90, leading the CIPD to argue for an end to mandatory retirement ages and against age discrimination in the workplace.
Charles Cotton, pensions adviser at CIPD, says: “These figures emphasise the need for the abolition of mandatory retirement ages. These arbitrary end-points to working lives are bad for business, and bad for the quality of life of the long-term pensioners they create.
“Many workers want to keep working beyond current retirement ages, albeit in many cases on reduced hours or in other more flexible ways. In the future, we expect this trend to accelerate as people choose to extend their working lives in order to supplement their retirement incomes and maintain quality of life.
“By kicking people out of the door because of their age, employers are also waving goodbye to experienced and talented workers. At a time when employers are struggling to recruit and retain workers with the skills and experience they need, this makes no business sense.
“With an ageing population, many firms are recognising that they need to recruit and retain older workers to ensure their workforce reflects the populations they serve.”
CIPD research shows the average cost of replacing a member of staff who leaves is around 4,500. It also says that workers over the age of 40 begin suffering age discrimination something that will become illegal from October 2006
CIPD argues that employers see older workers as, on average, more productive, reliable, committed and punctual than the rest of the workforce.