Many employers apparently believe the strong work ethic generally assigned to baby boomers is going to keep them in the harness well past traditional retirement age. Either that, or many employers just aren't thinking through their workforce planning very strategically.

An exhaustive study of corporations and their attitudes toward baby boomers from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) suggests one, or both, of these might be the case. Funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, The Aging Workforce Survey offers striking insight into the lack of insight demonstrated by employers when it comes to preparing for the loss of these experienced, hard-working professionals.

The survey found that, while a majority of companies have looked down the workforce road a year or two ahead and have made some plans for replacing retiring employees, only about one in five has taken the trouble to plan six to 10 years out. And those could be years of drastic change.

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