Megatrends Affecting the Workforce

Our Labour Force Is Ageing

1. Our Labour Force Is Ageing

In 1991, 6% of people aged 65+ were in the workforce.  Today, around 22% of those aged 65+ are working.

As baby boomers exit the workforce, firms will need to consider how to retain the expertise and skillset of older workers.

“Firms will need to do more to encourage older workers to stay in employment rather than spending more time with their grandkids or sharpening their golf handicap. This might entail offering more flexible hours for those not wanting to work full time” (NZ Institute of Economic Affairs)


Younger Workers Are Becoming A Scarce Resource

2. Younger Workers Are Becoming A Scarce Resource

1 in 4 workers was aged under 25 years in the late 1980s, and they will account for 1 in 7 workers in 2021 (Stats NZ).
As the pool of younger staff shrinks, there will more competition for junior and mid-level workers.
As ageing is influencing many advanced economies, there is increasing global competition for skilled workers.

“Firms will need to work increasingly hard to attract and retain the best and brightest employees aged under 40 – they will become a scarce and prized resource” (NZ Institute of Economic Affairs)


More Women Are Working

3. More Women Are Working

Women’s participation in the labour force (as a proportion of the working-age population) has increased significantly (64% in 2016, compared with 54.7% in 1986). (Stats NZ).
Around two-thirds (64%) of university graduates are women, and by 2025, three times more women than men will graduate from New Zealand tertiary institutions (OECD).

“Almost universally, men and women mention the ‘balance between work and family’ as one of the top challenges that working women in their countries face.” (International Labour Organisation)


Technology Is Revolutionising The Way We Work

4. Technology Is Revolutionising The Way We Work

Automation, artificial intelligence and digitalisation are changing the nature of our work and where we do it. Smart phones, laptops, and internet tools such as skype, facetime and “cloud” applications create a virtual office wherever you work.


Rise Of Part-time And Flexible Working

5. Rise Of Part-Time And Flexible Working

46% of New Zealand workers in the 31-45 age group work flexibly (Diversitas/OCG survey).
One in five workers (21%) of New Zealand’s labour force works part-time. Over 70% of part-timers are women (Stats NZ).

Millennial graduates rank a family-friendly work/life balance as their most important aspiration after being in good health
(NZ Universities Graduate Longitudinal Study).