How technology could impact your retirement

Step Up technology could impact your retirement

How technology could impact your retirement


Take a look at that smart phone you’re holding. Perhaps you’re even reading this blog on it.

It’s amazing isn’t it? Every day you carry around a small computer that not only lets you make phone calls, but also send messages and emails to your friends and family, share photos, do your banking.

You can listen to music, watch your favourite TV shows, book concert tickets and research just about anything you want to know on the internet.

Those of us born before the mobile phone was invented, or the internet for that matter, have witnessed dramatic changes thanks to advances in technology….

And they’re still coming!

Technology has changed our lives. Most specifically it has changed our working lives. And if you’re just entering the workforce now, it’s likely to impact your retirement too.

Here’s why.

The Changing Workforce

The changing workforce


Just think back over the most recent few years – two really obvious examples of technology that has changed the workforce are the introduction of the self-order system at McDonalds (and the pre-ordering app too) and the self-serve checkouts at the supermarket. Clever software has replaced people.

…On the other hand, there’s been an explosion of IT jobs as companies all around the world harness technology in various ways.

Change is happening at a rapid pace – new skills are needed, and it’s obvious that jobs that are now commonplace, might not exist in ten- or twenty-years’ time. And there will be others that we haven’t even realised a need for yet!

This is one of the reasons that employees going forward will be expected to have multiple degrees and careers in order to adapt to new opportunities and keep up with the pace of change.

‘Teleworking’, ‘tenure shifts’, and the ‘gig economy’ are all terms that are starting to filter into conversations about employment too.

Ultimately, these ‘buzz words’ tend to suggest that jobs are likely to have shorter time spans (meaning people will change jobs more frequently). We’re already seeing work-from-home and freelancing and contracting work arrangements are becoming much more common.

And there’s a rise in self-employment and people choosing to start their own businesses. Technology has given people a lot of freedom to step outside the old 9am-5pm regime.

While these options probably offer more work/life balance than was enjoyed by previous generations, it’s important to consider that workers are often paid less (for working less), holiday and sick pay and leave entitlements are allocated on a pro-rata basis, and there’s also the potential for significant periods of time in between stints at work. If you’re starting your own business, then the reality is you might not draw a wage for yourself for many months until the business finds its feet.

Challenges Ahead

Challenges ahead


This disruption to what’s considered the ‘traditional way of working’ presents some challenges for ‘Millennials’ and ‘Generation Z’ who could face a career with ‘intermittent’ income, making it much, much harder to pay debt and to save – to perhaps buy a home, to travel, to ensure there’s a ‘rainy day’ fund so bills can be paid in periods of non-work.

And even though you’re just starting out, and retirement seems a long way off, it’s still an important consideration, because small, incremental steps make a big difference over the long term. And there will, eventually, be a point when you want to retire.

Take control of your own future

Take control of your own future


The trick is to work within your individual circumstances, and save what you realistically can. With the right financial strategies in place, it’s possible, no matter what your income, to find ways to save money and acquire assets that can be used down the track, to support your life as you begin to take on other responsibilities like starting a family, or perhaps caring for an older relative.

The really important thing to remember is that if you’re just starting in the workforce, you have time on your side – most investments do better over the long term. By starting now, you’ll set yourself up for a more stable financial future.

Need more information? Get in touch with Step Up Financial