MetLife Retirement & Income Solutions

2020 Evolving Retirement Model Study

Feb 10, 2020

How employers are addressing the needs of an aging workforce, and the generations that follow. In this study:

  • How many workers never expect to retire?
  • Why are some workers delaying retirement?
  • What impact does this have on younger workers?
  • Who is responsible for retirement security?
Historically, the question of when to retire was the most important career decision for an older worker. Today, however, the bigger question is not when they will retire but if they can.

Many developments have challenged the assumption that 65 is the standard retirement age. With many older workers staying in the workforce longer, the traditional model of retirement — which assumed a fixed career end-date, employer-paid benefits, and clear boundaries between work and retirement — has been replaced by a new and evolving model.

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Delayed retirement a growing concern

The impact of delayed retirement has become a growing concern compared to a MetLife study a decade ago. Employers wish more of their workers would transition into retirement. And, some are offering late-career pathways to get them there.

Employers' wishes regarding timing of employee retirement


We wish older workers would delay retirement to allow more time for knowledge transfer to younger workers.


We wish more of our older workers would retire to allow for advancement opportunities for younger workers.

Demand for guaranteed retirement income

Nearly all employers recognize the importance of guaranteed retirement income, especially in light of the fact that many workers are delaying retirement because they feel financially trapped. To see more details on why it’s important to add a guaranteed income option to your retirement plan watch our short video.

Employer belief about retirement income security

96 % Decline of traditional defined benefit (DB) pension plans results in greater reliance on defined contribution (DC) plans for retirement income
88 % Retirees need a source of guaranteed income they cannot outlive
87 % Increasing life expectancy is negatively impacting workers' retirement security
81 % Workers delaying retirement because they feel financially trapped

Nearly all workers and retirees say it is important for retirees to have a source of guaranteed income they cannot outlive. It would bring them feelings of relief, excitement, hope, joy, and energy.

Did you know?

95% of workers and retirees say it’s important for retirees to have a source of guaranteed retirement income they cannot outlive


Today’s workplace landscape has evolved from the traditional notions of retirement. With this new retirement model come several considerations to meet the needs of an aging workforce, as well as the generations of workers who follow behind them.

Want more insights from the Evolving Retirement Model Study?


All stats are from the recent MetLife Evolving Retirement Model Study.

MetLife’s Retirement & Income Solutions division, the company’s institutional retirement business, issues products through Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (MLIC) and Metropolitan Tower Life Insurance Company (MTL), two wholly owned subsidiaries of MetLife, Inc. Retirement & Income Solutions issues products for transferred pension liabilities, stable value, institutional income annuities, benefits funding and structured settlements.

All guarantees are subject to the financial strength and claims-paying ability of the issuing MetLife company.