TORONTO, Jan. 17, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Canadians increasingly want to retire gradually, either by reducing their regular schedules or taking longer vacations, according to the Desjardins Insurance retirement survey. The results showed that 75 percent of respondents planned to transition into retirement over time, rather than stopping work suddenly.
This is particularly true for younger Canadians aged 18 to 39 (76 percent) and for those aged 40 to 64 (66 percent). Interestingly, over half of respondents aged 65 and up also agreed that they planned to retire gradually. The survey results also indicated that the desire for a transitional retirement isn't determined by the respondents' perceptions of their financial situation. Even those with excellent, very good or good financial security are as likely to prefer this method as those whose financial security is fair or poor.
"The traditional notion of retirement — of packing up your office at the end of your last day and completely changing your life — is ending," said Angela Iermieri, financial planner with Desjardins Group. "Smart organizations will support this change in their workplaces to help address the huge pressures that will be created as baby boomers make this shift."
Iermieri suggests that facilitating gradual retirement will have benefits for everyone in the coming decade. "Supporting the most experienced, knowledgeable staff to remain in the workforce in a transitional way allows employers to take advantage of their strengths, while they mentor younger workers who bring new skills and energy. Demographic patterns will soon create a critical shortage of experienced workers that transitional retirement can help address."
Most of the Desjardins Insurance survey respondents feel that a gradual transition is best for them, with 86 percent of respondents aiming for this goal. But more than half of respondents who stated that they planned to retire abruptly felt that gradual retirement would not be an option for them. When asked how their employers could do to help them to transition into retirement, respondents suggested that continued health benefits were a critical incentive. Other important incentives included:
- An interesting offer in terms of tasks, workplace and team
- A less demanding position
- Better salary
- New challenges.
"There are many creative ways to bring together different generations in the workforce to maximize the strengths of all employees and plan for the coming shortage of experienced workers," according to Iermieri. "Employers who develop a proactive strategy for transitional retirement will be much better prepared to face the future."
About the survey
SOM Surveys, Opinion Polls and Marketing conducted this web survey on behalf of Desjardins Financial Security from December 5 to December 12, 2012. In total, 2 037 questionnaires were completed with a sample of Canadian web panellists aged 18 years and over. The data was weighted to reflect the distribution of Canadian adult Internet users in terms of gender distributions in 10 provinces.
About Desjardins Insurance
Desjardins Insurance has been offering a wide range of life and health insurance and retirement savings products to individuals, groups and businesses for more than a century. As one of Canada's five largest life insurers, they oversee the financial security of over five million Canadians from offices across the country. Desjardins Insurance is part of Desjardins Group, the country's leading cooperative financial group.
SOURCE: DESJARDINS GROUP
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