Federal Employees Holding off on Retirement

A report by OPM has shown that there is a constant rise in the average retirement age. Currently, the retirement age has gone up to 62 years which is a significant increment from 2015. In fact, the rise was almost a full year in some of the largest agencies; that is the Army and VA. There are also some agencies with very high average retirement ages such as the Civil Rights Commission, whose average age is 68.4, Federal Maritime Commission with 67.1 and CFTC with 67.5.

The agencies with the lowest average ages are Justice with 56.2 and transportation with 59.7. The two agencies have a large number of workers qualified to retire slightly earlier with special provisions. This applies for law enforcement officers in the justice case and air controllers in the transportation category.

Over the last ten years, there has been a similar steady rise documented in OPM reports recording an increase of a total of more than two years in that time. This is from a 59.6 average in 2008.

The gender difference is quite minimal with the women’s average age being 61.7 and that of men at 61.9. Likewise, race and ethnicity difference was noticeably low, but it’s worth noting that the difference was substantial when it came to occupational grouping. In the OPM report, clerical workers were among the latest retirees at an average of 63.4, while people in professional occupations closely followed at 63.1. However, the earliest retirees came from federal workers under the special retirement provisions category who recorded an average age of 55.4 years.

The report did not, however, explain why the average age is always rising over the years but did mention the desire for federal workers to continue salary earnings as well as building later retirement benefits. There was also another voiced explanation that people who engaged in jobs that were less physically engaging took longer in the workforce. Improvements in health care was another reason for the increasing average retirement age.

Work-life balance is very important to Federal employees