Hot topic: State pension age rises

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The state pension age should rise to 68 by 2039, according to recommendations in the Cridland report

These changes will affect around 5.8 million people if brought into effect. But will everyone really be able to work this long? What can employers do to support their older workers?

Claire Hall, chief people officer at McDonald’s UK, says:

"We are seeing growing numbers of older people choosing to work later in life. This is not only a positive thing for them, but is also positive for the operations of our restaurants as the workforce mirrors the communities in which they serve.

"We employ more than 110,000 people in the UK, with an age range spanning 75 years. Our customers tell us they value seeing a workforce that reflects local communities across a range of demographics, including age. And we know that a mix of age groups in restaurants can provide better service. Age diversity is also popular among our crew, who tell us that they are happier in their jobs as a result.

"The benefits of hiring older workers are clear, but we have a responsibility to meet the needs of our older employees. This means giving them the flexibility and time to devote to interests outside of work, as well the opportunity to mentor younger colleagues. It’s these benefits, alongside on-the-job training for all irrespective of age, that will support older workers and provide a great experience for customers and crew alike."

Jonathan Watts-Lay, director of WEALTH at work, says:

"It’s vital those approaching retirement review how much retirement income they will need, or would like, as early as possible. If there is a shortfall up until the point of receiving the state pension, saving more now or working longer than planned could make a real difference, if possible for them.

"The value of well thought-out planning from early on should not be underestimated. Financial education delivered in the workplace can help individuals set and achieve their financial goals, giving them more control over their finances and ultimately their retirement plans in the future.

"At retirement guidance and regulated advice should be made available to employees to support better decision-making and protect them from costly mistakes, such as paying unnecessary tax or being scammed. Helping employees make the right choices to optimise their retirement income should be a priority."

Check back tomorrow for part two of this Hot Topic

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