HR · 20 May 2016

One-in-five workers set to become entrepreneurs in retirement

Barclays has launched an apprenticeship programme without an age cap to encourage older workers to get back into work if they wish
Of those people that plan to continue working in retirement, 20 per cent will set up their own business

Entrepreneurial zeal and a hunger for new challenges in business are driving Britons to establish companies later in life than ever before.

According to new research conducted by Aviva, four in ten people yet to retire plan to carry on working in some capacity when they are no longer employed full-time – indicating that the idea of working over the age of 65 has become more attractive.

In its “Voice of New Retirement” report 2016, the insurer also found that of those people that plan to continue working, 20 per cent will do so by setting up their own business, suggesting that entrepreneurialism is stronger amongst today’s workforce than those already retired.

Recording the experiences and aspirations of 6,000 UK adults, the research found that those still of working age were far less likely to be happy in work than individuals already retired. The unretired were found to be four times more likely to feel discontent at work, and six times more likely to feel unfulfilled than the over-65s.

Aviva manager Alistair McQueen acknowledged that British people were redefining what it means to be retired. “Working can take on a new meaning in retirement as money and having a routine establish a different importance and there can be opportunities to pay more attention to being fulfilled,” he added.

The news comes as more and more UK employees struggle to cope with both immediate and long-term financial planning. Almost three-quarters of UK workers believe they are facing a more stressful retirement than their parents, as considerations like student debt, housing and childcare costs distract people in their 20s and 30s from thinking about their long-term financial prosperity.

Earlier this year, a survey conducted by consultants Willis Towers Watson revealed that one-in-five working thirty-somethings currently struggle financially, whilst as much as 60 per cent of people in their 50s are happy with their savings and are not worried about their prospects as they approach retirement.

Senior Willis Towers Watson consultant Minh Tran commented: “Employees overwhelmingly anticipate less wealth in retirement. A shift by employers from a focus on savings to help with ‘wealth creation’ might lead to greater employee satisfaction and engagement.”

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Fred Heritage was previously deputy editor at Business Advice. He has a BA in politics and international relations from the University of Kent and an MA in international conflict from Kings College London.