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Half of UK workers 50+ shun ‘cliff edge’ retirement preferring to transition gradually into retirement

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Half (49%) of UK workers over 50 years of age and earning upwards of £20k would ideally like to transition into retirement by blending work and retirement. Workers favour a phase of ‘pre-tirement’ by adjusting the amount of time they work before they give up work altogether. The appeal of this flexible or transitional approach means UK workers would change their working pattern, but continue working later in life, in a reduced capacity in paid employment.

Aegon’s research found a transitional approach was embraced consistently across all income bands and in 11 out of 12 areas in the UK, with the only exception being the North East of England, where only a third (34%) would choose this route.

The traditional approach to retirement, the so called ‘cliff edge’, where workers go from their usual work pattern to full retirement all in one go, is now favoured by less than a third (31%) of workers over the age of 50.

The findings suggest that as people live longer with better health they’re more inclined to work for longer, easing themselves into retirement, avoiding an abrupt jolt brought about from stopping work all in one go. This combines financial benefits with freeing up more time for other non-work activities.

With many looking for a change in pace without giving up work altogether, having an employer that offers flexibility is key for this approach to work. Among those that would like to transition, as many as seven in ten (70%) would ideally like to adjust by working fewer days, while a significant 44% saw a reduction in the number of hours they work every day as the preferred solution. A third (33%) wanted more flexible working arrangements and a fifth were looking for more holiday entitlements while remaining in employment.




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