Research & Publications

WLG publications

We have gathered a wide range of research and publications which are relevant to the ageing workforce.       

We are keen to make sure this web page includes the most up-to-date and emerging information. Please get in touch if you know of any research or publications that we could feature.  Highlighted below are the resources which have recently been added.

Most recently added

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If you know what you are looking for, we have listed the publications alphabetically by publishing organisation.  Click on the relevant link below.

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ACAS age audit tool

Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) provides free and impartial information and advice to employers and employees on all aspects of workplace relations and employment law.

The age audit tool can:

  • assess what your employees think about age issues in their workplace and your organisations' approaches and policies
  • help address any risks or issues that could potentially lead to future discrimination claims
  • create a firm foundation for your policies, practices and future direction.

ACAS Employment relations comment - Age management and work: adopting a strategic approach  

ACAS publish a monthly employment relations comment by individuals on topical employment relations issues. Age management and work: adopting a strategic approach was published in May 2013 and was written by Chris Ball of The Age and Employment Network.

Age Action Alliance - healthy ageing workforce online toolkit for employers and workplace managers

This toolkit includes simple tools and checklists, and sources of expert advice to help any
employer and manager effectively address the health and productive contribution of an ageing workforce.

Age Action Alliance - Employer toolkit: guidance for managers of older workers

The toolkit is an interactive resource, offering guidance for managers of older workers.  The information available details how employers can better manage their workforce, and by doing so, how they can capitalise on the UK’s changing demographics.

The Age and Employment Network (TAEN) - Managing the ageing workforce: an introductory guide to age management for HR professionals

The TAEN guide assists HR professionals to understand the challenges and history of age management, the business case and policies for age management.

Ageing Well in Work: A Call to Action - Executive Summary  

Ageing Well in Work executive summary sets out to ensure older people realise the health benefits of remaining active in later life through employment, volunteering and other forms of civic participation.

Alzheimers Society - creating a dementia friendly workplace - a practical guide for employers

Alzheimers Society has produced guidance for employers to further understanding of dementia, how it can impact organisations and the practical steps employers can take to support employees. The guide is designed as a tool for employers to review existing approaches to supporting people living with dementia in the workplace. As the workforce ages and the number of people retiring at a later age increases, the number of people living with dementia while they are in work is set to increase.

Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) - The economic benefits of adults reskilling

The AAT report into the benefits of reskilling adult workers, published in April 2015, highlights the need and benefits of lifelong learning for individuals and the wider economy and society. The report findings support the NHS Working Longer Group recommendation 9 - learning and development that all staff should have access to appropriate and relevant education, training and development throughout their working lives.

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British Medical Journal - Night shift work at specific age ranges and chronic disease risk factors

The study examined the association of night shift work history and age when night shift work was performed with cancer and cardiovascular disease risk factors among 54,724 women in the nurse's health study.

British Medical Journal - The association between shift work and sick leave: a systematic review 

Shift work is associated with a number of negative health outcomes, although it is not known whether it is associated with sick leave. This systematic reviewtherefore aims to determine whether an association exists between shift work and sick leave.

Business in the Community - the missing million

Business in the Community have produced three reports to raise public awareness of the challenges facing older workers and their pathways back into employment.

  • The missing million: recommendations for action - Published on 22 April 2015, this report is a call to action. It is the third in a series of reports and sets out the recommendations for action - what business can do to prevent early exit from the workplace and what government can do to support people to stay in and access employment opportunities regardless of age.

  • The missing million: pathways back to employment - Published in February 2015, this report highlights the efforts being made by the over 50s when attempting to return to the workforce and what types of jobs they are finding.

  • The missing million: illuminating the employment challenges of the over 50s - This report was published in October 2014 and explores the employment challenges facing older workers and calls for urgent action from policy makers and employers to ensure that people over 50 remain in the labour market.

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CIPD - Avoiding the demographic crunch: Labour supply and the ageing workforce        

The CIPD have published a policy report in June 2015 in collaboration with the International Longevity Centre.  The study looks at the challenges for different industries (including health and social work) of an ageing workforce and how risks can be mitigated. 

CIPD - Creating longer, more fulfilling working lives: employer practice in five European countries     

Published in May 2016, the report on research carried out by IES on behalf of CIPD, offers recommendations on how employers can start a holistic approach to attracting and retaining the skills and talents of older workers.

CIPD - Employee Outlook: Focus on employee attitudes to pay and pensions Winter 2014-15

This report published in March 2015 explores a number of pay related issues and employee reactions. The report also explores employee attitudes towards pensions, pension reforms and retirement. The survey was carried for the CIPD by YouGov between 15 and 22 December 2014.

CIPD - Managing an age diverse workforce: what employers need to know

This three part research report was published in February 2015. Part 1 synthesises qualitative data to describe what people themselves feel and experience when working with age-diverse colleagues and gives employers important new and unique insights that will help them to nurture more productive workforces and avoid conflict. Part 2 showcases some interview-based case studies from organisations that are currently focusing on age-diverse opportunities at work and includes their top tips for progress. Part 3 draws conclusions and sets out recommendations.

CIPD - Managing an age-diverse workforce: employer and employee views

In winter 2013–14 CIPD explored issues relating to managing an age-diverse workforce, the result is this combined overview of the findings comparing employee and employer/HR perspectives on this important topic. The report, published in March 2014, explores some of the key issues of managing an age-diverse workforce.

CIPD and The Scottish Centre for Healthy Working Lives - managing a healthy ageing workforce: a national business imperative

Published in March 2012, this guidance looks at how employers can react in a strategic way to the challenges and opportunities presented by the increased ageing of the population. 

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DWP - Attitudes of the over 50s to fuller working lives   

This research explores the attitudes of those who are currently employed, self-employed, and unemployed to later life working and retirement. It also explores the attitudes and reflections of those who are currently retired to the circumstances surrounding retirement and later life working.  

DWP - Employing older workers: an employers guide to today's multi-generational workforce and employer case studies 

In February 2013, DWP published guidance and case studies for employers about effectively managing an ageing, multi-generational workforce and how to make the most of older workers by maximising the skills and productive contributions of all workers. The guidance is drawn from employers who report clear business benefits from this approach.

DWP - Fuller Working Lives: a framework for action

Fuller Working Lives - a framework for action, published in 2012, sets out the Governments' commitment to enabling people to remain in work longer and to plan for a sustainable retirement.

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European Agency for Safety and Health at Work - Healthy workplaces for all ages    

This eguide provides practical information, tips and examples related to the ageing workforce and the opportunities it brings. It has been tailored to  four different audiences; employers, staff, HR professionals, Occupational health professionals. 

European Agency for Safety and Health at Work - current and emerging occupational safety and health issues in the healthcare sector, including home and community care

This report, published in October 2014, gives an overview of the current and emerging occupational safety and health issues for health and social care workers and how these affect their safety and health at work and influence the quality of care they provide.  The report highlights the challenges facing the sector, including shortages of skilled and experienced professionals, an ageing workforce, increased use of technology requiring new skills and the introduction of new care pathways to tackle multiple chronic conditions.

European Research Council - Faster increases in human life expectancy could lead to slower population aging 

We currently use the assumption that people become old at a fixed chronological age. This report asserts that a preferable alternative is to base any measure of aging on people’s time left to death, because this is more closely related to the characteristics that are associated with old age. The authors of the study, Warren C Sanderson of Stony Brook University and Sergei Scherbov, the world population programme deputy director at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria believe that based on current life expectancy, middle age should be considered to be 60 years of age. The study used European populatioon data.

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Institute for Employment Services (IES) - Evidence reviews and economic analysis for the NICE guidance on workplace health of older workers 

NICE has commissioned IES, in conjunction with the Work Foundation and the Universities of York and Lancaster, to provide a series of evidence reviews on the barriers, success factors and cost effectiveness of interventions to promote and protect the health of older employees, to support them to stay in work after state pension age and to support them to make effective transitions to retirement.

Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) - Post retirement age workers and health and safety 

Published in 2014, this study , undertaken by Brunel University, compares the safety experiences and practices of post retirement age workers with those of pre-retirement age. 

Joint Programming Initiative - More Years, Better Lives - Strategic Research Agenda   

The Joint Programming Initiative has published its More years, better lives strategic research agenda, which promotes research on demographic change in Europe and is considered the first step towards joint activities and the alignment of national research programmes.

Mercer - Age-friendly employer research 

Published in October 2015, this report covers diversity and inclusion policies and behaviours, retirement saving and ability to continue working, managing health, creating an age-friendly workplace, commitment and motivation and recruitment practices. The report also includes specific recommended actions for employers to help them diagnose where the opportunities and risks may be in their current practices.

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National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidance on workplace health - older workers     

NICE are preparing guidance for workplace policies and approaches to promote and protect the health of older employees. You can access the documents related to the guidance, which will be updated once the guidance is published. The anticipated guidance publication date is February 2016.

National Institute of Adult Continuing Education (NIACE) mid-life career review

NIACE conducted a 15-month project from 1 January 2013 to 31 March 2014 to develop and test different models of mid-life career review. The models were piloted and evaluated to find out which approaches are most effective and for which client groups. A leaflet, project scoping literature and project findings are available on the mid-life career review webpage.

Newcastle University Institute for Ageing - Ageing workforce policy briefing note

Newcastle University Institute for Ageing have released a policy briefing relating to the ageing workforce. Published in July 2015, the policy briefing identified some of the current challenges facing older workers if they choose to work longer and makes recommendations to address the issues.

NHS Employers - 12-hour shifts: prevalence, views and impact  

Steven Weeks, policy manager at NHS Employers summarises the key findings of the major new study 12-hour shifts: prevalence, views and impact in this briefing published in August 2015.

The NHS Working Longer Group (WLG) - Audit of existing research 

The NHS Working Longer Group commissioned Bath University to undertake an audit of existing research into the impact of working beyond age 60. This was published in June 2013 and provided the group with an understanding of what evidence was available at that time in relation to the impact of people working beyond age 60.

Nuffield Trust in association with NHS Employers - Reshaping the workforce to deliver the care patients need     

The Nuffield Trust, in association with NHS Employers, has published a new report in May 2016, which suggests that developing the existing non-medical workforce is vital for trusts to meet the changing needs of patients.

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Office for National Statistics - Age structure of the United Kingdom 1971 to 2085   

The Office for National Statistics have published an interactive graph showing the changes to the age structure of the United Kingdom between 1971 and 2085.

Open University Business School - Business Perspectives trend report

The latest Open University Business Perspectives trend report looks at the topic of age at work and focusses on 'multigenerational workforces: leading and managing in a new age' (page 3)The article considers the wider world of multigenerational working, looks at flexibility, environment, mindset, future workforce and learning.

PWC - New golden age index: how well are countries harnessing the power of older workers

PwC has developed a  golden age index comparing how well workers aged 55 and over are being utilised. The index includes relative employment, earnings and training rates for older workers for 34 OECD countries over the period since 2003.

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renEWL team - Local area unemployment, individual health and workforce exit: ONS longitudinal study                

This study from the renEWL team, published at the end of February 2016, looks at how the retention of older people in the workforce is not distributed equally across all geographical areas. It also looks at the correlations between higher levels of area unemployment and a higher prevalence of disability pension usage.

renEWL team - Working conditons as a predictor of retirement intentions and exit from paid employment   

This is a 10-year follow up study to the English longitudinal study of ageing. Members of the renEWL team show how better working conditions can help delay retirement timing. Using data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, Dr Carr and colleagues found workers with high job control or who felt their work was adequately recognised, preferred to retire later and were less likely to stop working.

Report to the Government by Ros Altman, Business champion for older workers - A new vision for older workers: retain, retrain and recruit

Ros Altmans' report to the government on working in later life was commissioned by the Department for Work and Pensions and was published on 11 March 2015. The report looks at the need for thoughts and views about retirement to change in order to overcome the barriers to later life working. The main recommendations of the report are for employers to retain, retrain and recruit older workers.

Scottish Centre for Healthy Working Lives - Managing healthy ageing workforces: a small and medium sized enterprise business imperative     

In February 2015, the Scottish Centre for Healthy Working Lives released this report aimed at those who manage small to medium sized organisations.

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UK Commission for Employment and Skills - The future of work: jobs and skills in 2030   

This research, published in February 2014, explores the future of work and how jobs and the skills needed in the workplace will change by 2030.

Workage - Active ageing through work ability      

Workage is a three year EU-funded project testing the assertion that the engagement and retention of employees aged 50+ will be improved by enhancing employee voice and empowering workplace practices for everyone. The project is working with two pilot sites including maternity services at Southern Health and Social Care Trust, Northern Ireland and the Place Directorate, Stoke on Trent City Council. Outcomes and recommendations will be made available during Summer and Autumn 2016.

The Work Foundation - Living long, working well: supporting older workers with health conditions to remain active at work

This report, published in July 2015 by the Health at Work Policy Unit, looks at how the workplace will need to change to address the challenges of an ageing workforce.

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