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Call to recruit 1million more over 50s by 2022 from Government guru

Employers should commit to employing 12% more employees over the age of 50 by 2022, according to Andy Briggs, the Government’s business champion for older workers.

Briggs has called for organisations to publish age data so others can see their progress in meeting this target, and wants employers to sign up to a “Commit & Publish” pledge to secure a million more older staff in the workplace by 2022.

A number of employers have already agreed to the pledge, including Aviva, Atos, Barclays and the Cooperative Group. They have also published the percentage of workers who are over 50.

Briggs believes that publishing workforce data by age will boost transparency into the number of older workers at different employers and encourage other employers to widen their talent pool to bring in more older workers.

The average age in the UK is now 40, compared to 30 in 1974. The employment rate in the UK drops to 64% at the age of 60, compared to 83% at the age of 50, according to Labour Force Survey statistics.

Briggs, who is also CEO of Aviva UK Life, said: “The UK is facing a colossal skills gap, and older workers are vital to filling it.

“Businesses can show leadership here, through committing to real change and actively seeking to recruit more over 50s into their organisations.

“By being open about the progress they are making, they can also lead the way in demonstrating the benefits of having a diverse team of employees that represents all sections of society.”

He added that Aviva’s workforce has around 19% of staff who are over 50, and that it “hopes to exceed rather than meet” the 12% target.

The aim is for the data to be published by workplace charity Business in the Community, which has also produced a guide to support organisations in publishing age data.

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