Age and Work

The first WHO Global Forum on Innovations for Ageing Populations underscored a crucial insight

The power of involving older adults in the innovation process. These individuals hold invaluable data about their preferences, requirements, and usability needs. By co-creating solutions with them, innovations not only become more tailored and effective but also empower the older population, ensuring greater acceptance and success.

Harness the Potential of an Ageing Workforce

The ageing workforce presents both opportunities and challenges for employers. In New Zealand, without a mandated retirement age, many mature-aged employees continue working by choice or necessity, introducing unique dynamics to the workplace. Engaging in effective life-stage conversations with employees helps identify their intentions and priorities early on, fostering a more supportive and proactive work environment. This approach can re-engage disengaged employees and inspire fresh thinking on later-stage careers for those over 50.

Addressing the diverse needs of ageing employees is crucial. Some may seek continued professional growth, while others might require flexible work arrangements or additional support. By acknowledging and accommodating these varied needs, employers can create a more inclusive and dynamic workforce.

Adapting to a Rapidly Ageing Population 

Globally, populations are ageing at an unprecedented rate. This demographic shift will increase the demand for primary health care and long-term care, require a larger and better-trained workforce, and necessitate more age-friendly environments. However, these investments can enable older people to contribute significantly to their families, communities, and society, whether as volunteers, workers, or in other roles.

Embracing Change and Innovation  

Challenging the status quo and welcoming change is essential for progress. While being a team player is important, questioning existing practices and stepping outside comfort zones can lead to significant rewards. Embracing failure as a learning opportunity and being bold in decision-making are crucial for transformative progress.


The WHO Global Forum highlights the need for co-created innovation, emphasising the diverse capabilities and contributions of older adults. Investing in health and wellbeing programs for all employees helps create inclusive environments that leverage the potential of our ageing workforce. By embracing innovation and addressing the unique needs of mature-aged employees, we can build a more resilient, adaptable, and thriving society.

We partner with businesses and organisations that are ready to make the change for better outcomes for their people, their business, and their communities.

Leonie Walwork Change Strategist Workplace Wellness

Leonie Wallwork

Leonie is a Change Strategist with Workplace Wellness and Associate with Partners in Change Partners 

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