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Many Executives Unconcerned About Near-Term Baby Boomer Retirements

Survey Finds Chief Financial Officers Who Are Worried Fear Losing Leadership, Legacy Knowledge

TORONTO, March 20, 2014 /CNW/ - More than one-fifth of the Canadian workforce has passed or is nearing retirement age, according to Statistics Canada, yet research suggests many executives aren't too concerned with losing baby boomer employees to retirement in the next couple of years. Only 26 per cent of chief financial officers (CFOs) interviewed for a recent Robert Half survey said they were worried about this possibility. Sixty-four per cent of financial executives reported being unconcerned.

Among CFOs who are worried about losing baby boomers to retirement, executives most commonly cited legacy knowledge (29 per cent), functional skills (18 per cent) and leadership (16 per cent) as the greatest potential losses to their organization.

The survey was developed by Robert Half, the world's first and largest specialized staffing firm, and conducted by an independent research firm. It is based on interviews with more than 270 CFOs from a random sample of Canadian companies.

CFOs were asked, "How concerned are you about losing employees from the baby boomer generation to retirement in the next two years?" Their responses:

Not at all concerned 47%
Somewhat unconcerned  17%
Somewhat concerned 9%
Very concerned 17%
Don't know/no answer 10%
Total 100%

CFOs concerned about those retirements also were asked, "What is the greatest potential loss to your business due to the retirement of baby boomer employees?" Their responses:

Legacy knowledge 29%
Functional skills 18%
Leadership 16%
Nontechnical attributes (e.g., soft skills) 14%
Contacts outside the organization 1%
Don't know/no answer 22%
Total      100%

"As a best practice, all organizations should prepare their operations for the departure of experienced professionals, be it to retirement or otherwise," said Greg Scileppi, president of Robert Half, International Staffing Operations. "Properly-developed succession plans can ensure that legacy knowledge, functional skillsets and leadership will stay with the firm."

Scileppi added that implementing programs that allow professionals to transition into retirement can be a win-win situation for the employee and the employer. "Despite approaching retirement, many dedicated employees want to continue contributing to their teams with the expertise they've gained over the years," he added. "Businesses can benefit from this as well by working with these employees on a consulting basis to train staff members on technical and non-technical skills, keeping the knowledge within the company while supporting employees through a smooth transition."

About Robert Half

Robert Half is the world's first and largest specialized staffing firm, with more than 345 staffing locations worldwide, and offers online job search services on its divisional websites, all of which can be accessed at www.roberthalf.ca. Follow Robert Half on Twitter at twitter.com/RobertHalf_CAN, and gain insights on the latest financial hiring and salary trends at www.roberthalf.ca/salarycentre.


SOURCE Robert Half Finance & Accounting

Image with caption: "Robert Half survey finds Chief Financial Officers who are concerned about near-term baby boomer retirements fear losing leadership, functional skills and legacy knowledge. (CNW Group/Robert Half Finance & Accounting)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140320_C6072_PHOTO_EN_38147.jpg

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