Men and Women Expecting to Work Longer: Do Changing Work Conditions Matter?

Citation:

Moen P, Kojola E, Kelly EL, Karakaya Y. Men and Women Expecting to Work Longer: Do Changing Work Conditions Matter?. Work, Aging and Retirement [Internet]. 2016.

Abstract:

This study investigates the effects of an organizational flexibility/support initiative on Boomers’ expectations of working longer. Most research on retirement planning is based on studies of earlier cohorts and may not capture the unique experiences of Boomers. We draw on U.S. data from the Work Family and Health Network’s randomized control study of an organizational redesign (called STAR) that offers employees greater control over when and where they work and greater supervisor support for their personal lives to investigate its relationship to the subsequent retirement expectations of 287 Boomer professionals and managers aged 50–64 in an information technology (IT) division of a large Fortune 500 corporation. We use multinomial logistic regression to assess whether being randomized to the STAR treatment is associated with Boomers expecting a later age of retiring and of exiting the workforce, as well as their subjective assessments of the probability of their working for pay at ages 65 and 67. We find that STAR predicts Boomers’ expectations of retiring later, but not expectations of age of exiting the workforce or of a postretirement encore job. Women respondents, working in the same IT jobs as men and with long tenure, nevertheless expect to retire earlier than their male colleagues. We draw on in-depth qualitative interviews to contextualize our results and promote understanding of how changes in the work environment might shape Boomers’ expectations of retirement. Findings suggest that initiatives like STAR promoting greater control and support could help organizations retain their older professional (in this case, IT) workforces.

Publisher's Version

Last updated on 08/15/2017