UK – Empty nesters keen to return to the workforce / Daily News / Editorial / Home

25 November 2022

Today is the end of National Older Workers Week which comes at the same time when there is concern over the number of working-age adults, particularly those over 50+, who are out of the labor market (known as “economically inactive”) because of long-term sickness. However, the latest figures from the Department for Work and Pensions show that there are over nine million 50+ workers now on payrolls, an increase of more than 210,000 since last year.

Research from the airline easyjet shows 78% of British parents, aged 45 and over, want to take on a new challenge once their children have flown the nest. Over half (57%) of respondents also said that now their children are not dependent on them anymore, they hope to find a new career in something they are truly passionate about.

The survey also revealed that many ’empty nesters’ are now turning to their children as motivation for seeking out a new vocation, with over two thirds (67%) feeling inspired by their children’s career success and growth.

The research also revealed the top 10 most desirable new career choices for the over 45s. Charity work and volunteering topped the list, followed closely by being a paramedic, with cabin crew and teacher also in the top five.

Top 10 New Career Choices for parents over 45:

  1. Charity worker/volunteer (39%)
  2. Paramedic (29%)
  3. Teacher (28%)
  4. Librarian (27%)
  5. Airline cabin crew (26%)
  6. Tradesperson eg: carpenter or electrician (24%)
  7. Civil service (22%)
  8. Chef (18%)
  9. Receptionist (16%)
  10. Driving instructor (14%)

easyJet has launched a campaign targeting ’empty nesters’ to help it recruit sufficient cabin crew. The airline has already seen a 27% increase of cabin crew over the age of 45 since 2018.

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