Americans are working longer than ever, with working adults aged 65 over predicted to increase to 32% by 2022. While some seniors are punching the time clock out of necessity, others are working by choice. Staying on the job is a means of staying engaged, social, and purposeful in a time where seniors face increasing isolation. It’s also a smart way to pad savings accounts so seniors can enjoy their golden years without feeling the pinch of a fixed income.
Seniors who remain in the workforce aren’t necessarily sticking with their old careers, however. Many are launching encore careers with the help of tech-based resources, motivated by job satisfaction just as much, if not more than a paycheck. In addition to fulfilling work, older adults are seeking flexibility and the freedom to enjoy their retirement years.
These are three creative ways that older adults can achieve a flexible, fulfilling career.
Start a Home-Based Business
Seniors who aren’t interested in answering to a boss will find the freedom and challenge they’re looking for in self-employment. Rather than starting a brick-and-mortar business, which requires a substantial investment of both time and money, older adults should consider a home-based business. A home-based business could be an online store, a freelance or consulting business, or a service-based business like pet or childcare.
While home-based businesses have a lower barrier to entry than brick-and mortar businesses, there are still costs and requirements to consider. In addition to applying for permits and building a website to advertise services, many self-employed people purchase separate computers and phones for business use. This lets them take advantage of business tax deductions and obtain more powerful devices. A personal smartphone, for example, may only be needed to make texts and calls. A business phone, on the other hand, is effectively a mobile office. When it comes to tasks as important as communicating with clients, it’s worth finding a device that’s fit for the job and budget. Scour the web for deals on high-end phones like the latest iPhones.
Get a Remote Job
Seniors who want the flexibility and convenience of working from home without the stress and responsibility of self-employment should search for remote jobs. Remote jobs are becoming more common as businesses see the benefits of letting employees work from home. While it’s possible to find fully-remote jobs, including jobs that allow partial telecommuting will expand senior job hunters’ options.
Remote jobs are most common in the tech industry, but several more conventional fields are also embracing remote work. The insurance industry is a great example. Traditionally an office-based job, today there are a wide range of remote work opportunities in the insurance sector, including case managers, underwriting managers, and claims representatives. Of course, not all insurance companies share the same progressive view of remote work, so job seekers should research companies before applying for positions. Job sites like Glassdoor are great resources for learning about insurance companies like Lincoln Heritage, including reviews from people who have worked there.
Seasonal jobs are the ideal fit for seniors who hope to spend their golden years traveling. Whether they find seasonal work in their favorite travel destination or work locally before jetsetting off to travel, seasonal jobs are a great way for older adults to balance work and play. Seasonal jobs aren’t restricted to low-paying retail work. Examples of seasonal opportunities for seniors include becoming a tax preparer, tour guide, tutor, national parks employee, or cruise line employee.
While making a career change in your 60s is daunting, it’s also a chance to redefine oneself and pursue old passions. Instead of settling for a career that’s comfortable, seniors should seek flexible work that allows them to not only pay the bills, but enjoy their retirement. With work suited to this new stage of life, seniors can take advantage of added income without the stress of a full-time career.
This Article is a Guest Post:
Sharon Wagner is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Senior-Friendly Workouts, Fitness Gear, Healthy Recipes, and More and runs the website SeniorFriendly.info. As a senior herself, she understands that an older body and mind impacts the daily lives of many seniors. She hopes to provide resources and inspiration to other seniors seeking a healthier lifestyle.