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Doing Nothing Is Not An Option

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Doing Nothing Is Not An Option

Facing the Imminent Labor Crisis

Thomson South-Western,

15 min read
6 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Want to retire early? Forget about it. By 2010 there will be more jobs available than workers to fill them.

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Editorial Rating



  • Innovative
  • Eye Opening
  • Concrete Examples


This is a timely book about a huge, unchangeable natural event: the demographic shift. Nothing can turn back the clock or change the direction of a demographic wave. Author Robert K. Critchley is well armed with age data to make a powerful case that there will be a worldwide labor shortage, but corporate CEO and human resources (HR) people are doing little to prepare for this massive change in labor management. To prepare for the inevitable labor force shift, companies should recruit and encourage older (50 plus) employees to remain on the job. Downsizing and outsourcing are shortsighted knee-jerk reactions to this looming problem and will not strengthen corporations for the inevitable. Companies that really believe that people are their best asset must develop effective human resources programs that actually do employees some good. This is crucial reading for HR executives and CEOs. It’s a reminder that time stops for no corporation, and that the people who work for you, even if they are getting a little gray, are going to be tough to replace - so you may want to keep them around.


In the future, there will be more jobs available than workers to fill them.

Despite news reports about the large number of jobs being outsourced and the rising number of new immigrants, statistics show that the United States actually will have a shortage of workers beginning in 2010. This will be accompanied by a drop in the number of workers aged 25 to 34, amid a work force that will continue to grow increasing older. By 2010, 17% of the workforce will be composed of people older than 50.

This fundamental demographic change means that corporations must maintain and stimulate their workers or be faced with all the difficulties of a smaller, less experienced workforce. Corporations face the real problem of diminished productivity stemming from simply not having enough talented people with the needed skills to keep operating.

Based on straightforward demographics, CEOs and human resource departments must recognize that the font of talented new people entering the workforce is about to slow down drastically. Shortsighted corporate downsizing policies, which laid off many workers older than 50 or forced them into early retirement, exacerbated the worker shortage. ...

About the Author

Consultant Robert K. Critchley served as president of DBM, Inc., an international outplacement and management company, and previously worked in banking in Australia and the U.K. His consulting company specializes in strategic planning and corporate restructuring. He holds various director positions for companies on the Australian Stock Exchange.

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