Holistic Strategies Handling Ageing Workforce


Ageing presents wide ranging human resource challenges. Large numbers of retirements mean significant loss of experience, know-how and organisation memory.

Staff departures or retiring also provide opportunities for organisations. There is a chance to bring in a new profile of employee, to change assign staff across divisions, to improve job-filling through broader candidate search and, perhaps more contentiously, to reduce staff numbers.

Most governments well aware  of  the  ageing  challenges  and  of  the  need  at  least  to  uphold public service capacity in the face of large-scale staff departures.

In Australia, the Australian Public Service Commission takes an active role in sharing  experiences  across  government  agencies  with  workforce  planning and  other  ageing-related  issues.  Ageing policies, focused on upholding capacity, are broad but concerns remain on coordinating such policies across the different levels of government and thus the ability to manage staff and resources reallocation.

While in Germany, the public service ageing policy tied to the strategy supported by the  federal  government  that  combines  a  sustainable  family  policy   with  a  policy  of  active  ageing that promote the  use  of  experience-based  knowledge.

With most the public service retiring over a short period of time, upholding the capacity of the public service to deliver the same level and quality of public services for all citizens is a complex management task and achieved in tandem with service delivery changes to meet the new demands from an ageing society.

An  ageing  population  and  an  ageing  public  service  need  holistic strategies  that  encompass  improved  service  delivery  planning  and  workforce planning across sectors and levels of government, reallocation of resources, and productivity  increases.

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