Baby Boomers Retiring: 17 Facts About How it Will Impact HR

February 09, 2017 by Raymond Lee

The silver tsunami refers to the mass amount of baby boomers retiring. This generational shift is paced to impact the workforce over the next decade. On average, there will be 10,000 baby boomer retirements each day. This change will be the impetus of workforce planning globally for all organizations.


While there is an abundance of literature that can be found on the disruption and change millennials are causing within our workforce, there is a very limited amount of information surrounding the same measures of disruption caused by the silver tsunami movement.

Due to this lack of information, we compiled a list of facts about baby boomers, their exits from organizations, and the impacts on our workforce. It is important to analyze this information, and then make workforce-planning strategies for your organization to prepare for the silver tsunami.

You can download our free workforce-planning template here.

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17 Facts About How Baby Boomers Retiring Will Impact HR

1) More than half of first year baby boomers (born in 1946) have already retired.

2) Baby boomers are now physically in worse shape than generations that have retired previously. While lifespan has increased, health related illnesses, suicide, and divorce are higher now.

3) There is tons of work available to boomers. 55+ jobs are growing at an annual rate of 4.1%, which is four times the overall rate of job growth.

4) Social security should be stable through 2035, securing many of the baby boomers through their lifespan.

5) Retiring baby boomers aren’t moving away from home anymore. Only 1.6% of retirees moved state lines in recent years, and Florida has decreased its share of out of state retirees by half, in comparison with the previous generation of retirees.

6) 15 percent of people in this generation are financially supporting both a parent and an adult child at the same time.

7) Two thirds of baby boomers plan to work past 65, or not retire at all. This is due to low savings accounts and poor economic conditions. Download our checklist of ways to prepare for conversations with baby boomers retiring and with reluctant retirees here.

8) The typical baby boomer has set aside $147,000 for retirement. Twenty percent of baby boomers retiring have less than $50,000 saved, and more than ten percent have saved less than $10,000.

9) Only 13% of baby boomers believe they will be able to retire and maintain a comfortable lifestyle.

10) Only 48% of employers have made flexible policies that allow baby boomers to switch from full time to part time.

11) 54% of baby boomers retiring believe they will live in their current home for their lifespan.

12) 17% of baby boomers never work for pay again after retiring.

13) 16% of baby boomers work part time, and 6% work full time after retiring.

14) Baby boomers were born between 1946- 1964. There are 72 million people in this generation in the United States today.

15) 10,000 baby boomers each day will reach retirement age.

16) The things retirees miss most after exiting from their job are social interaction, structure, goals, healthcare benefits, and outsourcing household chores.

17) The Higher Education industry is paced to be impacted the most by baby boomer retirements due to the tenure of positions and volume of boomers in roles at institutions.

Raymond Lee

Raymond Lee

Raymond Lee is the President of Careerminds, a global outplacement company based in Wilmington, Delaware. He has over 20 years of human resource, outplacement, and career consulting experience. He has his bachelor’s in psychology and holds a Master’s Degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Louisiana Tech University. He is active in SHRM and ATD. Raymond’s been featured on SiriusXM Business Radio, CareerTalk, and the Wall Street Journal and he’s published a book titled, Clocking Out: A Stress-Free Guide to Career Transitions.

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