It's no secret to tank truck carriers that their driver force is getting gray hair, but the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the trend is likely to continue, specifically for all employees.
BLS points out that the current situation is not necessarily related to Baby Boomer workers. The data shows that the total labor force is projected to increase by 8.5 percent during the period 2006-2016, but when analyzed by age categories, very different trends emerge.
The number of workers in the youngest group, age 16-24, is projected to decline during the period while the number of workers age 25-54 will rise only slightly. In sharp contrast, workers age 55-64 are expected to climb by 36.5 percent. But the most dramatic growth is projected for the two oldest groups.
The number of workers between the ages of 65 and 74 and those aged 75 and up are predicted to soar by more than 80 percent. By 2016, workers age 65 and over are expected to account for 6.1 percent of the total labor force, up sharply from their 2006 share of 3.6 percent.
BLS also noted that the older workers are better educated that the age group was no so long ago. In 1997, 21 percent of employed older workers had less than a high school education compared to only 10 percent of those ages 25-64. By 2007, older workers with less than a high school education accounted for just 13 percent of that group’s employment, compared with nine percent for younger workers.
At the same time, BLS stated: "With the Baby-Boom generation about to start joining the ranks of those age 65 and over, the graying of the American workforce is only just beginning."
The BLS report is available online at bls.gov.