Retiring boomers may cause 'brain drain'

Retiring boomers may cause 'brain drain'

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by Joe Smith, KGW Business Reporter

kgw.com

Posted on January 27, 2014 at 7:42 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 28 at 7:25 AM

PORTLAND -- Employers need to prepare for a brain drain.

The first wave of an unprecedented number of workers will retire over the next 5 to 20 years as baby boomers age.

Today, there are now four generations in the workplace. But it's boomers who are making the most noise.

Rob Romasco, President of AARP, paid a visit to the Rose City Monday to meet with local AARP volunteers at the Meals on Wheels headquarters in Southwest Portland.

Romasco said it's really a wake-up call for boomers and employers.

A new Gallup survey finds nearly half of baby boomers in the workforce say they don't plan to retire until they reach 66 or older.

One in 10 say they'll never stop working.

For employers, preparing for the aging boom it isn't easy. They're faced with having to replace a workforce with less experience, while important knowledge from longtime employees leaves with the workers as they retire.

"Smart businesses are understanding that older workers represent a terrific pool of talent, experience and the ability to mentor. So it adds value to their business," said Romasco.

Romasco said that next year, every baby boomer will be 50 years of age or older and there are 80 million folks that fit in that category.

For their second act, many boomers are starting their own businesses. According to AARP, more folks over 50 are doing that then people under 30.

On Wednesday, January 29th, Washington County Chamber of Commerce and Vision Action Network will sponsor "Preparing for the Aging Boom". It will be held at the Embassy Suites in Tigard from 7:30-9:30am. To sign up, call 503-846-5792.

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