More older workers in companies
The share of workers aged 50 and over has more than doubled over the past 24 years (11% in 1994 compared to 25% in 2018). This phenomenon affects all companies, whatever their size.
Towards an age management plan
Despite all its effort, keeping older workers in work continues to be a major challenge for Luxembourg, which remains below the targets set by the European strategies (Lisbon and EU2020). In this respect, in April, 2014, the government put forward a bill to introduce new measures regarding age management policy. A main feature of the bill is the introduction of a compulsory age management plan for companies employing 150 workers or more.
Companies of all sizes concerned
Businesses with only one employee have the largest share of older workers (41% in 2018). For other companies, the share is between 23 and 28%. The ageing of Luxembourg’s actively working population is now underway, and every company is affected, whatever its size. Whether within the legal framework or on a less formal basis, in the future they will all have to think of ways of keeping older workers in jobs.
Where, in the framework of the Lisbon strategy [see Employment rate (%) of older workers aged 55 to 64 within the EU27 (2001-2017)], the employment rate of older workers (55-64) reached almost 40%, in Luxembourg in 2010, this rate was still below the 50% mark targeted by the members of European Union for this age group. As active ageing is still part of the EU2020 strategy, the Ministry for Labour, Employment and the Social Economy of the Grand Duchy introduced a bill in April 2014 for policy measures with respect to age, establishing, among others, an age management plan, to be compulsory in companies of 150 workers or more (for more information: click here).
In this context, in 2012, LISER conducted a research programme* on behalf of the Ministry for labour, employment and the social economy, programme through which many indicators have been calculated. One of the key indicators concerning ageing was the evolution of older workers over 50 between 1994 and 2018 according to the size of the company.
In 1994, employees aged 50 and over represented 11% of the Luxembourg labour market. Interestingly, the rates were highest at each end of the company size scale. Firms employing only one employee** had a rate of 14% and firms employing 500+ people had a rate of 17%. Meanwhile, companies employing between 2-499 workers ranged between 8% to 9%.
In 2018, the rate of employees aged 50 and over has more than doubled; increasing to 25% of the Luxembourg labour market. Firms employing only one employee had the highest rate of 41% and firms employing 500+ people had a rate of 24%. Meanwhile, companies employing between 2-499 workers saw the largest rate increase, rising to a share of 23% to 28% from 8% to 9% in 1994.
We therefore observe ageing of occupied labor force in Luxembourg since the share of older workers aged 50 years and over has more than doubled in 24 years. As we can see, this phenomenon concerns all companies regardless of their size and that is why they will have to implement different measures concerning age management and active ageing, either within a legal framework or through more informal discussions.
*In the framework of the European year for active ageing and solidarity between generations in 2012, LISER has developed, in collaboration with the Ministry for Labour, Employment and the Social Economy, a research program concerning active ageing in Luxembourg. The aim of this program was to provide tools to reflect on company policy concerning active ageing, the situation of older workers, including unemployment or retirement, as well as public policies implemented in Luxembourg and other countries.
**the indicator is calculated for all working persons in domestic employment. This does not therefore concern independent workers but businesses with one employee (worker, employee or civil servants).
People with a job in domestic employment in Luxembourg on the 31st of March of each year: including salaried workers ("statut unique") and the civil servants; excluding the unsalaried, unemployed and people not in domestic employment in Luxembourg.
*This field is quite different from the one used in the publication in which the indicator appears (domestic employment in the private sector). This is why some differences can occur in the results.
IGSS data (march of each year), calculations LISER
In order to respect the protection of personal data, IGSS has used a specialized software to round numbers in order to insure additivity of the tables as much as possible. Real numbers are rounded up or down to the tens of units (but not necessarily to the closest ten) so as to reduce the risk of identification and disclosure.
In 1994, 17% of workers in firms of 500 workers and more were older workers (50 years old or over). In 2018, this figure has risen to 24%.