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Mature-age workers

Last updated February 2024

This chapter explains reasonably practicable steps you can take to reduce the health and safety risks to mature-age workers in your business.

Benefits of recruiting and retaining mature-age workers

Definition: Mature-Age Worker

A mature-age worker is any worker aged over 45 years.

With an ageing population in Australia, more mature-age people are in the workforce, and this will continue to increase.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), between 2000 and 2020, the proportion of the population aged 65 years and over increased from 12.4% to 16.3%. Based on current population trends, this group is projected to increase more rapidly over the next decade, as further cohorts of baby boomers (those born between the years 1946 and 1964) turn 65. Much of this population is heading towards retirement. If these workers retire at the same time, it will leave a significant gap in the labour market, as there are not enough younger workers to replace them.

Important: Recruiting and retaining mature-age workers will keep them in the workforce to alleviate the labour gap. It also brings numerous other benefits to the workplace.