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Older workers want to work flexibly and for most it's more important than salary

The attitudes of workers towards salary and benefits in 2019 are fast becoming a very different to those held by their counterparts as little as 20 years ago.

The belief that salary is the biggest motivator for employees is now seen to be outdated as soft benefits become more important.

Chief among these soft benefits is the opportunity to work flexibly. Certainly for workers aged over 50 this can become critical as parents find themselves having to shoulder caring responsibilities for either aged parents or younger grandchildren alongside the normal demands of family life.

Evidence for this view comes from three studies:

1. An HSBC employee productivity survey found that 89% of people said that flexible working is their highest workplace priority ahead of salary.

2. Mumsnet research found that 60% of parents rated flexibility higher than salary.

3. Some 62% of IT workers said they would change jobs to get a better work-life balance in a study from CW Jobs.

Evidence gathered by SkilledPeople.com shows that almost everyone aged over 50 would prefer to work flexibly, and this benefit can be more important than pensions or generous holidays.

This requirement increases with age and is an even higher priority for workers aged over 60 or over 65.

"As the numbers of people in the UK workforce aged over 50 and 60 increases rapidly in the next few years it makes sense for recruiters and employers to always think about whether they can offer some form of flexible working when recruitings" says Keith Simpson of SkilledPeople.com.

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