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Transitional employment aspirations for bridging retirement: Implications for training and development

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Purpose ‐ The purpose of this paper is to identify the transitional employment (TE) aspirations and training and development needs of older and younger workers at risk of early retirement due to limited education and/or employment in blue-collar (BC) occupations. Design/methodology/approach ‐ A computer-based methodology is used to evaluate the demographic effects of gender, education level, and occupation group on aspirations pertaining to TE and training and development in a sample of over 1,000 local government employees. Findings ‐ Older BC, secondary school-educated and younger workers are less interested in TE than older workers with higher levels of education or from white-collar backgrounds. The early retirement risk factors of BC work and secondary school education had a more limited effect on perceived training and development needs for older workers. However, for younger workers, these risk factors provided the impetus to undertake training to move into less physically demanding or more challenging roles as their careers progressed. Practical implications ‐ Via the identification of education level and occupation types groups' TE aspirations and perceptions of preparatory training and development within younger and older cohorts, long-term strategies to develop and retain staff may be formulated. Originality/value ‐ Past studies of TE have rarely included younger workers or older workers at risk of early retirement. Preparatory training and development for TE roles has not been considered in the literature.
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Keywords: Australia; Blue collar workers; Education; Employees; Older workers; Retirement

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2010

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