Coping with Baby Boomer Retirements: A Business Perspective


There are 76 million boomers in the United States. The odds are that some of them work for you. But for how much longer? Born between 1944 and 1964, boomers are now between 55-75 years old. Inevitably, some of them have already retired.


Although 42% of boomers do not plan to retire at age 65 and 25% say they’ll never retire, the most significant wave of boomers leaving the workforce is yet to come.


The Boomer Impact on Your Business


From a business continuity perspective, you should be thinking about what impact boomer retirements will have on your company. Planning ahead is critical. So, let’s look at a few considerations.

  • Much will depend on what role those boomers play in your organization. If your CEO is a boomer, for example, do you know when he or she plans to retire? And is there a succession plan in place?

  • If your accounting department is staffed with boomers, are their work/business processes documented?

  • Regardless of their role, documentation is critical. You don’t want knowledge to walk out the door with retiring boomers.

  • Is your HR department planning ahead for a boomer exodus? HR should be accumulating resumes of likely candidates so that they’re ready to start interviewing and making offers to replacements as soon as those boomers give notice that they’re retiring.

  • Will, it cost you more or less to replace boomers? You need to budget accordingly.


The Hidden Opportunities


As the boomers in your company depart to spend their golden years as they see fit, perhaps there’s a silver lining you have not considered. Maybe this would be an excellent time to take a step back before merely replacing key personnel with their doppelgangers.


One consideration is that you’re not replacing boomers with boomers. You’re replacing them with younger generations who likely have different expectations and different skills, too. Here’s a breakdown of the pools from which you’ll be hiring:


  • Gen X: Gen X was born between 1965 - 1979 and are currently between 40-54 years old (82 million people in the U.S.)

  • Gen Y: Gen Y, or Millennials, were born between 1980 and 1994. They are currently between 25-39 years old. Gen Y.1 = 25-29 years old (31 million people in the U.S.) or Gen Y.2 = 29-39 (42 million people in the U.S.)

  • Gen Z: Gen Z is the newest generation to be named and were born between 1995 and 2015. They are currently between 4-24 years old (nearly 74 million in the U.S.)

A wave of boomer retirements may be an opportunity for restructuring, for making changes not just in your business structure but in your business model as well. Not because those boomers were holding you back. But because it was easier to maintain the business as usual status quo. Now you have an opportunity to rethink anything and everything. So, carpe diem!


Business Continuity Planning (BCP) with Liberty Grove


Let’s sit down and discuss your plan as there are many considerations that we haven’t even touched upon in this article. For more details, you can call us at 630-858-7388 or email us at nav@libertygrove.com.


Retirement? For More Baby Boomers, The Answer Is No https://web.archive.org/web/20110721123311/http://www.thirdage.com/retirement/retirement-for-more-baby-boomers-the-answer-is-no

Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y, and Gen Z Explained https://www.kasasa.com/articles/generations/gen-x-gen-y-gen-z


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