Silver Tsunami, how it affects Baby Boomers in the workforce

Last Update: June 17, 2015

Silver Tsunami, yet another description that boomers have inherited, and

it is appropriate, since 10,000 boomers are reaching retirement age each day. When we think about a Tsunami, a large wall of water comes to our minds. What is even more important is the effect that the wall of water has on the people who find themselves in the path of that wave.

Silver Tsunami is the wave of human beings who are retiring day after day, month after month, and year after year until 2030. This wave of retiring people is going to have multiple effects on boomers. It is going to affect boomers quality of life, the quality of healthcare, and where boomers will be living. The Silver Tsunami is also going to affect those younger members of our society, who will be in a position to provide support services to boomers, and those who will be replacing retired boomers in the workforce.

Fact of the matter is that the effects of the Silver Tsunami on our nation, could be the subject of a book, and the subject matter may not be easy to read. The Silver Tsunami is going to be the cause of some very challenging times for all of us. It is my intention to take a look at the effect of the Silver Tsunami on the workplace.

Vacancies in the Workforce

Members of Generation X, and the Millennials have been known to complain that boomers are staying in the workplace to long, and not allowing them to take over their positions. Well boomers are not going to be able to continue working forever. Boomers are not retiring at the typical retirement age, mainly because they do not feel that they are prepared financially to retire. That excuse for not retiring is not going to hold water for the long term. Old age is like death, and taxes. We all have to face its consequences.

When the Silver Tsunami starts in the workplace, three things are going to happen.

Number one. Members of Generation X or members of the Millennial Generation are going to have to take their place. The question remains to be answered. Is there sufficient talent available, to fill the workplace vacancies left when boomers finally do retire?

Number two. The concern is that there is not enough qualified replacements for the retiring boomers. And that the replacement process is not going to be seamless. It is going to take some time for replacements to be trained and educated. Bare in mind that sooner or later boomers are going to be retiring at a rate of 10,000 a day. That is going to leave a heck of a hole in the workforce. And we have to ask ourselves. Is there going to be enough qualified replacements to fill the hole caused by boomers retiring in such large numbers. Also how long is it going to take educate the boomer replacements.

Number three. Trade schools, colleges, and universities are going to have gear up to tailor their educational programs to the immediate needs of the workforce, which is looking for qualified help. It will help if the workforce management would anticipate their employment requirements, when boomers decide to hit the bricks, and pass that information on to the institutions of higher learning. Could be an additional source of income for the trade school, colleges, and universities.

How Private Industry Deals with the Silver Tsunami

The effects of the Silver Tsunami should not take anyone by surprise. In the workplace we know who is retiring, and when. Executives in

private industry has the time on their side to plan how to fill vacancies in their workforce. Since many boomers are delaying their retirement, the companies they work for can make the retiring boomers a key participant in the training process, and job vacancy filling function.

Many boomers are very willing to be phased out gradually. That is, becoming a part time employee can be a desirable alternative. Business owners like this because the part time, soon to be retired employees, can become hands on expert trainers. It’s a win, win situation for the employer, and the boomer.

Different Story For Government Employees

Many government agencies offer a generous retirement package. For that reason boomers can’t wait to take advantage of these nifty government pension plans. These boomers are saying, give me my good watch, so I can start enjoying the good life. Ya, these boomers are the lucky ones. I don’t feel that the government agencies deserve any sympathy however. It seems that there is always be plenty of qualified people to fill vacant government jobs.

Silver Tsunami, Silver Lining

With all these boomers leaving their jobs, at a rate that will eventually be, in round figures, 10,000 a day. That leaves plenty of work for the Generation Xers, and the Millennials. Think about it, boomers have been slugging it out all their lives, to find decent employment. Now the Generation Xers, and the Millennials should find themselves in the cat birds set. I think they call the upcoming job market, a employees market.

What Happens to the Baby Boomer

I’m pretty sure that it is inevitable that, when it comes to the current workplace, boomers are going to be on the outside looking in.

So what is the boomer to do. Find a New Niche. What choice do we have? We sure as heck are not ready to roll over, and find a place to die. There is a bunch of stuff we can do, now that our time is truly ours to use as we see fit. Please indulge me while I list a few options;

  • Further our education.
  • Start that small business that we have always dreamed of.
  • Encore Career
  • The ultimate dream, Travel. That’s my thing. Buy a motorhome, and travel from the east coast to the west. Then see what is between the southern border, and the northern border of this great nation.
  • Start a internet business that may help other boomers accomplish their lifes goals.
  • Do not build a bucket list.

Well my friends, that is all I got for now. Comments are always welcome, in fact they are encouraged. You can leave them below.

Thank You


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ShirleyWoon Premium
I'm a baby boomer, and been retired nearly 20 years now, employed elsewhere for 5 years, then employed by my church for peanuts for close to ten years, then decided I would be better employed looking after my youngest son as his chauffeur and general factotum.

Been doing that for the last 5 years and has worked out well, as it takes hours to find a place to park, which will make him late for work, and which will cost a bundle to park for 8 hours. So now he's never late for work, and I get to use the car to run my errands, and after that I have hours to spend with the WA and perhaps learn to be a Internet marketeer before I go 25 minutes away to pick him up......for once a win-win situation.

Thank you for sharing Darrell, I realise many will be in culture shock for a while as not all retired baby boomers would have a nice nest egg (like me), but perhaps they'll find something like the WA for one - to be their own boss so to speak. God bless.......
darrellw Premium
Thank you Shirley for your thoughtful comment. I'm happy for you, that your retirement is going well for you. It seems that it's all about finding our niche in our retirement. And once we do, things get a lot easier. For us that are only a couple of years into the retirement experience, only time will tell.

Thanks for your interest in this post.
ShirleyWoon Premium
always dear Darrell, blessings again.....
geo2112 Premium
Hi Darrell very good points and for me exactly true. I could see myself on the outside looking in as I am approaching that time when we are supposed to be retiring. I'm having none of it and I looked at this as a perfect vehicle to start a new business that will take years to fruition properly but take me through the retirement years and at least still be working and accomplishing something. Nice blog. Keep em coming. All the best

George :)
darrellw Premium
Thank you geo for your kind comments. I see that you uncovered the underlying message of this post. WA is a way to defeat the effects of the Silver Tsunami. Go for it my man.

Thank you again for your interest.
Papi Premium
Hello Darrell,
As usual all good points.
I like starting an Internet business,and the Good Lord willing,I too can enjoy a motor home and travel,travel,travel.
Oh yeah,do not build a bucket list but, do what you want and enjoy the " silver tsunami" years :)
darrellw Premium
Thank you once again Papi for you comment. It is important that no matter how boomers are described, we do what we have always done,and that is live life to it's fullest.

Thank you again Papi for your interest.