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Six out of 10 happy to work longer for less: KCCI survey

Six out of 10 salaried workers are willing to apply for the salary peak system to stay employed longer, the Korea Chamber of Commerce and Industry said on Monday.

The salary peak system provides older workers with an opportunity to work past their retirement age, but for a smaller salary once their “peak” has passed.

A survey taken by the chamber showed that out of 353 salaried workers, almost 60 percent said they would apply if their companies introduced the system.

More than 10 percent of the corporate sector appeared to have adopted the system as of the first half of last year, according to related data.

The main objective of the salary peak system is to allow more of the skilled workforce to stay on as society ages at a faster pace.

By 2019, about 15 percent of the Korean population is expected to be 65 years of age or older.

The survey showed that senior employees were more eager to apply for the salary peak system.

Among those in their 20s, 42.7 percent they would submit applications. The number went up to 64.2 percent for salaried workers in their 30s, and further to 65.1 percent for respondents in their 40s and 50s.

More than half of the respondents said they would like to extend their retirement by 4-5 years, while almost 20 percent said they preferred an extension of six years or more. About one quarter of the surveyed said 2-3 years.

More than 40 percent said they would accept a 10 percent or less decrease in their paychecks in return for working longer, while another 37 percent said they would be willing to accept up to a 20 percent cut.

Meanwhile, more than two-thirds of the surveyed employees said regardless of whether they would apply or not, they advocated the salary peak system, mainly because it would buy them time to prepare for their future.

By Kim Ji-hyun (jemmie@heraldcorp.com)
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