What can HR do to ensure successful retirements?

Human Resource (HR)


14 April 2021

What can HR do to ensure successful retirements?

Retirement isn’t just about employees ending their careers at the respective organization, it’s more than that. The old guard exits the organization while new blood comes in. The vision of retirement involves much more than a simple goodbye. Many teams look exclusively at the financial aspects though, but this pandemic has taught everyone that efforts can be made for a smoother transition.

Here are some strategies and tips to consider for the HR function.

  • Overall Development: Retiring members should be given opportunity to talk to and guide their successors. Knowledge silos whereby the knowledge remains stuck in one place should be avoided and an inter-departmental ideas exchange should take place. Appreciation for other departmental workers can help reduce any future chaos or sub-standard work causing a dent in the organization’s financials. 

Consider periodic retirement assessments to understand how many retirements may take place in the next period so that you can focus on getting replacements and giving a seamless transition to the retiring employees.

  • Don’t undervalue the old guard: Respect the experience your retiring employee has given you and give adequate value to them, even in their last few days. This will let the employees know that you care about them, and they would willingly be ready to share their knowledge and experience with the new blood. This will help in organizational efficiency and will not let a vacuum take place once they retire while someone new comes in. 
  • Choose the better conversation: Rather than being blunt like asking them if they are planning to retire soon or if they are ready to transition to that life, ask them what they plan in their retirement years. Try suggesting to them things they can do to enjoy their after-work life. Talk to them with a positive mindset. The relationship with your employee is what is positioned at the highest level of meaning and purpose. It’s about the journey and not the destination. 

As an HR manager, try participating in that journey to enhance the employee experience. Investing in that experience can assist the organization reap better benefits as the employees will be motivated more to work better, even in their last days.

  • The greatest gift of flexibility: Rather than gifting them a parting gift like a retirement watch or stationery, gift them flexibility. Try creating a creative retirement program for your employees focusing on flexibility as an important factor. The idea is to create something without future expectations or pre-set notions of limitations. 

Find the right tools and resources; engage your employees to design such a plan which will allow the employee to have a seamless transition. You can also get a dedicated career coach. They would help the employees with the self-assessment for in-depth retirement plans. They can help ‘think out of the box’ while considering ‘normal’ retirement plans. You can also consider an alternative to full retirement plans like consulting or as a trainer for the organization.

  • Drafting a succession plan: Once your present employee retires, you need to find a suitable fit to replace them. Rather than just focusing on age, gender, or a particular characteristic; we should focus on finding similar or better skill-sets to help with their roles and responsibilities. This plan would disallow any kind of self-limits and create opportunities while searching for replacements for the retiring employees.

Try utilizing similar strategies before it’s too late. Get on with different programs like What Are Employees Truly Expecting from Financial Wellness Programs?. Early Salary has many blogs and ideas which can help you going ahead Planning for Retirement Extending Financial Wellness Into Retirement, With Technology Financial Wellness – All about having the financial freedom to make choices.

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