Meeting the challenges of an aging workforce

Department of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Washington School of Public Health and Community Medicine, Seattle, Washington
American Journal of Industrial Medicine (Impact Factor: 1.74). 04/2008; 51(4):269 - 280. DOI: 10.1002/ajim.20569
Source: PubMed


Demographic, labor market and economic forces are combining to produce increases in the number and percentage of U.S. workers 55 and older. In some ways these workers will be our most skilled and productive employees but in others the most vulnerable.Methods
The literature on aging and work was reviewed, including demographic trends, physical and cognitive changes, safety and performance, work ability, and retirement patterns.Results and Conclusions
Older workers have more serious, but less frequent, workplace injuries and illnesses than younger ones. There is evidence that many of these problems can be prevented and their consequences reduced by anticipating the physical and cognitive changes of age. Many employers are aware that such efforts are necessary, but most have not yet addressed them. There is a need for implementation and evaluative research of programs and policies with four dimensions: the work environment, work arrangements and work-life balance, health promotion and disease prevention, and social support. Employers who establish age-friendly workplaces that promote and support the work ability of employees as they age may gain in safety, productivity, competitiveness, and sustainable business practices. Am. J. Ind. Med. 51:269–280, 2008. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

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    • "Sukces wymaga chęci i umiejętności pracodawców do zagospodarowania potencjału starszych pracowników. Z dostępnych badań wynika , że starszy wiek jest uznawany za okres mniejszej wydajności, co może mieć najważniejsze znaczenie dla działań pracodawców wobec starszych pracowników lub kandydatów do pracy (Silverstein 2008). Negatywne opinie pracodawców mają wpływ na sytuację pracowników. "
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    ABSTRACT: Pracodawcy odgrywają podstawową rolę w definiowaniu warunków kontynuowania lub opuszczenia pracy w wieku emerytalnym. W artykule został zaprezentowany zarys teoretyczny relacji pomiędzy pracodawcą i pracownikiem. Wiek pracownika ma znaczenie: chociaż nie determinuje on tej relacji, to jest jednym ze wskaźników dla oceny dopasowania i określania oczekiwanej wartości pracownika. Analizie zostały poddane uwarunkowania preferencji wiekowych polskich pracodawców wobec pracowników. Zaprezentowano je w formie zestawu modeli regresji logistycznych dla akceptacji kandydatów w wieku od 20 do 65 lat. Dane pochodzą z największych polskich badań pracodawców Bilans Kapitału Ludzkiego 2010–2013. Wyniki wskazują na powszechne występowania typizacji wiekowej w procesie rekrutacji. Wśród uwarunkowań preferencji wiekowych istotna była między innymi strategia inwestycji w nowego pracownika, zawód, do jakiego poszukiwany był kandydat, wymagania wobec doświadczenia, wykształcenia i kompetencji kandydata. Wyniki wskazują także na związek typizacji wiekowej z typizacją płciową.,5,studia-socjologiczne-2-2015.html
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    • ". This report also indicates an increased number of days away from work (an indicator of illness severity) in people above 35 years of age, and that people aged 45–54 have a higher incidence of workrelated injuries [42]. Since age is a risk factor, and since the average age of the American and international work force is rapidly increasing due to economic realities, more WMSD cases are predicted [19] [180] [196]. The Health and Safety Executive Health and Safety Laboratory has called for more work on the contribution of aging to WMSDs [100]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Chronic inflammation in aging is characterized by increased inflammatory cytokines, bone loss, decreased adaptation, and defective tissue repair in response to injury. Aging leads to inherent changes in mesenchymal stem cell (MSC) differentiation, resulting in impaired osteoblastogenesis. Also, the pro-inflammatory cytokines increase with aging, leading to enhanced myelopoiesis and osteoclastogenesis. Bone marrow macrophages (BMMs) play pivotal roles in osteoblast differentiation, the maintenance of hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs), and subsequent bone repair. However, during aging, little is known about the role of macrophages in the differentiation and function of MSC and HSC. Aged mammals have higher circulating pro-inflammatory cytokines than young adults, supporting the hypothesis of increased inflammation with aging. This review will aid on the understanding of the potential role of pro-inflammatory (M1) and anti-inflammatory (M2) macrophages in differentiation and function of osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Inc.
    Life Sciences 12/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.lfs.2014.11.011 · 2.70 Impact Factor
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    • "Maximum physical strength is usually achieved at age 20 – 30 yrs, gradually declining until 40– 50 yrs and more quickly thereafter (Millanvoye 1998; Faulkner et al. 2007). Many other physiological functions, such as the maximal oxygen uptake, exercise capability and maximum heart rate also decline with increasing age (Benestad 1973; A ˚ strand et al. 1973; Rogers et al. 1990; Ilmarinen et al. 1991; Tuomi et al. 1997; Silverstein 2008). Thus, it is quite commonly assumed that the workload may become too strenuous for senior workers doing physically demanding work. "
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    ABSTRACT: Unlabelled: This study analysed the work ability of elderly construction workers. Forty male construction workers, 20 young (age < 33 yrs) and 20 senior (age>44 yrs) workers, were tested regarding aerobic power (VO2max) and muscle strength. The aerobic demand of a number of tasks in construction work was measured and compared with the workers' aerobic power. VO2max was higher for the young, and they performed better on most muscle strength tests. The measurements showed that about half of the senior workers had to use more than 30% of their maximum oxygen uptake on some tasks. In conclusion, because elderly construction workers decline in physical fitness, they are more exposed to overload when performing heavy manual work than are their younger peers. Increasing their individual fitness or adjusting their workload may be important for staying in the workforce for such workers. Practitioner summary: Construction workers must occasionally perform strenuous work tasks that may endanger their safety. This was more often the case for elderly workers investigated here. Elderly workers should therefore be particularly observant of their physical fitness, and should possibly train during leisure time to improve their fitness.
    Ergonomics 11/2014; 58(3):1-13. DOI:10.1080/00140139.2014.977828 · 1.56 Impact Factor
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