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Many Employers Explore Phased Retirement

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An increasing number of employers are thinking about adopting phased retirement programs.

Consultants at Hewitt Associates L.L.C., Lincolnshire, Ill., report that finding in a summary of results from a survey of about 140 large and midsize employers.

About 55% of the participating employers have weighed the impact that potential retirements could have on their organizations, and 61% have developed or expect to implement special efforts to hold onto targeted employees who are near retirement, the consultants report.

Hewitt found 47% of companies have some type of phased retirement arrangement available to employees, but just 5% have actually formalized those programs. Almost 40% are interested in establishing a phased retirement program in the future.

About 65% of the participants said their companies keep near-retirees by offering part-time employment year-round. In addition, 37% said giving near-retirement employees access to retirement benefits would help them keep employees on the job.

About 67% of the employers said phased retirement programs help workers by providing supplemental income, and 60% said the programs help workers by giving them access to employer-subsidized health care.