Retirement shouldnâ€™t mean turning off all your years of experience as a safety and health pro and giving up your credentials just because youâ€™ve stopped commuting in the morning. Retirement is best done gradually.
In fact, most Baby Boomers say they plan to retire in their late 60s, according to recent polls. And ten percent of current workers say they will retire at 71 or older â€” or will never retire.
About two-thirds of current workers plan to keep on working after theyâ€™ve retired. Most (67 percent) say they just want to keep busy (mental stimulation and challenge), while the rest say theyâ€™ll need more money. The ideal working arrangement involves sequencing between work and leisure.
Physically and mentally, people are better prepared to work longer into their life. Life expectancy is now at an all-time high: the average of 77.6 years is a four-month increase over last year.
Retirement generally means working less hours or having more control over the hours you work. If your current full-time job requires 60 hours of work a week, retirement could be seen as scaling required work down to 40 hours a week. Gradually, however, you should plan to work less and less hours until some point where you work no more.
Itâ€™s never too early to start planning. Even if youâ€™re young and just starting out, it helps to have a roadmap to guide future career transitions.
What are your options?With good planning there are many options to work less hours or to gain more control over the hours you must work. Here are ten options to consider for your retirement plans:
Another option is hooking up with an employer such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). FEMA has an â€œon-callâ€ safety cadre that responds to presidential-declared disasters. Youâ€™ll have to be available about 70 percent of the year and be ready to work away from home for a few weeks at a time, maybe two or three times a year. FEMA is a top-class organization.
And donâ€™t forget that most of Americaâ€™s six million workplaces are small, usually too small to afford a full-time safety and health pro. But they may be able to afford someone coming in about once a week to help keep everyone safe.
About nine percent of White Paper respondents will pursue a graduate degree this year. More than one-third (35.9 percent) will pursue or maintain certification.
All of these options should highlight your interest in safety and health. Focus on what motivates you. Your plan also should pinpoint what needs to be achieved, where, when, and how. Just because youâ€™re more able to â€œdo your own thingâ€ doesnâ€™t mean you should do it ad hoc and without structure. Many retirees say that structure in their lives helps them stay productive.
CertificationsMany retiring safety and health pros possess certifications, such as the CSP and CIH. Most of these certifications have a requirement to earn a minimum amount of points in various categories, such as continuing education, over a period of time (usually five years). As you wind down full-time safety and health work, be careful to maintain these points or you risk losing your certification.
How to maintain your safety and health certifications should be clearly identified in your retirement plans. Talk with your certification body about what you need to do.