Boom in American birthrate

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Between 1946 and 1965, the American birthrate increased significantly, resulting in around 76 million births. A drop in the number of children, along with an increase in life expectancy, has assured that the baby boomers continue to constitute a sizable portion of the American population. The rise in global labor markets means that persons born between 1965 and 1980, as well as those born after 1981, are unable to meet labor demands, forcing a large number of baby boomers to work into their fifties and sixties, with some who had planned to retire early being recalled in the process. American organizations are also said to “like” this group of workers (baby boomers) because they are hard workers, more experienced and loyal than their immediate followers. Human Resource professionals are working to ensure they attract the best employees to their companies, which has significantly influenced the way they deal with recruitment and employee retention. Employer branding is one of the most widely used strategy in attracting top talent.

Key words: Baby Boomers, branding, employer.

Aging Workforce in the U.S

These are people aged 55 and above and were born between years 1946 and 1964 after the 2nd world war. They are commonly referred to as “Baby Boomers” because they were born at a time when American birthrate was very high.

Some baby boomers in the American workforce started retiring between 2007 and 2009 while some considerable number is still in the work force (Henry, 2014). It is projected that by the year 2020, the employees who will be 55 years and older will be about 25% of the entire work force. Most baby boomers are delaying their retirement while some who already retired are being recalled. This is mainly due to two reasons. First is that 60% of them lost value in investments because of the economic crisis as reported by a 2011survey and second is an expanding gap between labor that is needed and labor that is available (there is a higher number of older people than there is younger ones) (Feldman, 2014).

From a Human Resource point of view, the aging workforce is regarded as the most skilled and most organizations and employers are afraid their retirement is likely to pose a “big Problem”. These organizations have developed several methods of handling the aging workforce to ensure they are well accommodated so that they continue offering their services deep into old age.

Aging workers are valued highly and HR professionals know that they have to planning process for their impending retirement; their human capital needs both in the short term and the long term. More attention is being directed to strategic workforce analysis so that they can measure the effect of losing their most skilled labor in the coming years.

Most HR professionals offer flexible and interesting work to the aged because they understand their lifestyle and difficult schedules of old age (Minchington, 2009). This greatly keeps aged workers within the job while the company is preparing for their exit.

Coaching and mentoring programs are being employed in order to “tap” the vast knowledge that these workers possess.

Added value of having Aging Workforce

Experience: aged workers are rich in knowledge and relevant skills needed in everyday operation of an organization. This is brought about by the long years of service. It is increasingly become common for most employers to begin mentorship and training programs so that the aged workers can pass on their knowledge to younger employees.

Stability: baby boomers lead relatively more stable life styles and habits than millennials. Few millennials stay at a job for more than 3 years, which makes older employees more admirable because they hardly “move around” (Henry, 2014).Baby Boomers are regarded as being more mature, professional, have stronger ethics and are more reliable in an organization.

Despite the aforementioned benefits, aged workers have an impact on an organization’s image. The Human Resource Office is expected to customize some services to deal effectively with situations involving the aged. They also have to study how to evaluate aged workers, especially when dealing with laying off of personnel so that it does not be regarded as age discrimination. Managers have to set up plans for pensions that would pay employees once they retire as their retirement is imminent (Right, 2013).

A Thriving Employer Brand

Every organization aims at improving its reputation as an employer so that employees can value them highly. With the rising number of aging workers in the US, employers know that they must impress and present themselves as the employer of choice so as to attract top talent to their premises (Feldman, 2014).

Paul Hitchens describes a successful brand as being ‘like famous personalities’ because they possess a special way of doing their things. Employees and customers easily recognize them. Such employers have magical moments, distinctive look and feel. Disney Resort is a modern example of such organization with magical experiences that give it a great brand among employees.

Waitrose Supermarket is does not sell its commodities at the cheapest prices but its customer experience is one of the best. It offers great employer branding and hence is able to attract the best candidates for their vacancies as well as retain its best customers and employees: A perfect example of a thriving brand (Clarke, 2010).Other successful employer brands deliver their brands through employees. Every employee is an ambassador for a certain brand with their behavior influencing public opinion and perception of the brand. It becomes the duty and responsibility of every employee to protect and fight for the brand’s reputation. When employees are informed and sincere, they can add value to a brand that nothing else can.

A successful employer brand has clear brand objectives which makes it easier to save money and time for running it as well as being able to budget well. Improved relationships between HR, marketing and communications, internal education and building awareness are all signs of a thriving employer brand (Clarke, 2010). Becoming a benchmark company, with the best practices that everyone wants to learn, having a great recognition among the public and getting talked about are other indicators of a successful brand. Every job-seeker wants to identify with such organizations while other companies- even rivals-want to copy them.

How An HRM Might Determine Whether Or Not There Is Value In Having An Aging Workforce

Several methods can be used to assess the value of elderly employees and determine if they are a necessity in an organization.

Work Results. A comparison can be made against some performance standard either relatively or absolutely (Right, 2013). If the job has a measurable result, indexes can be used to appraise the employee. Examples of results that can be used to evaluate performance are punctuality, profitability and rates of production.

Behavioral Checklist. The HRM can compile a form that would describe an employee’s job behaviors as either effective or ineffective. A number of behavioral dimensions relevant to the job are then related with those of employee. If they comply then the HRM will conclude that the worker is valuable otherwise they are not.

Management by Objectives. HRM discusses employee’s progress towards his/her set goals, which are specific and measurable. The expected results would be defined then measured at a set frequency. The actual performance of an employee is compared with the expected results to establish if they are productive or not (Right, 2013). The HRM may gather either one or all of the following qualitative data while evaluating his/her aging workforce: In-depth interviews, direct observation or written documents.

Examples Of Private-Sector Employers With Aging Workers

Nugget Markets which is found in Woodland, it has about 130 baby boomer headcount out of 1300 workers. This is mainly attributed to their flexible manner in which they handle its baby boomer employees. World Wide Technology which is situated in New York has 568 baby boomers out of a total of 3110 employees. Kimpton Group found in San Francisco has 1248 baby boomers out of 8320 employees. Edward Jones situated in Des Peres, Missouri has a total headcount of baby boomers of 12 614 out of 40142 total employees (Koba, 2015).

All the above employers are favorites for aging workers because they offer flexible working schedules, they offer stability and better pay.


Baby Boomers are a very important generation in America; they possess greater skill, experience and intellect than subsequent generations. They offer a rare resource and all corporate institutions should work hard to ensure that as most of them wind up their careers, their knowledge is tapped and taught to the rest of the generations. Encouraging workshops, seminars and innovative exhibitions could be one such way of ensuring that today’s youth get full access to the vast resource this group possesses.


Right, C. P. (2013). Performance Appraisal Methods Retrieved on February 15, 2017 from

Minchington, B., & Estis, R. (2009). Six steps to employer brand strategy. Retrieved on February 15, 2017 from

Feldman, M. (2014). Intergenerational Communications in the workforce. Retrieved on February 15, 2017 from

Henry, G. J. (2014). HR and the aging workforce: Two CEO points of view.

Clarke, T. P. (2010). HR Management: Training & Development. Retrieved on February 15, 2017 from:

Koba, M. (2015). 100 Best companies to work for: Retrieved on February 15, 2017 from

June 12, 2023
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