Demographic change

Demographic change is affecting both the structure of our staff and the structure of our customers. Ethnic diversity is on the rise, whilst the distribution of young and old and the relationship between men and women is shifting. In order to satisfy the diverse needs of consumers, our sales lines are tailoring their concepts, product ranges and marketing strategies to meet the expectations of local customers. As a responsible employer we also pursue a forward-looking HR policy – with a systematic development of managers as well as targeted further and advanced training. By creating an attractive working environment, we also promote the diversity of our staff. In this way, we can benefit yet further from the various strengths and ideas of our employees and thus safeguard our competitiveness in the long run.

Management Board of METRO AG

Prof. Sarah Harper, Director of the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, University of Oxford (photo)

»The ageing of Europe’s population will decrease the working age population by 48 million by 2050, and the EU-27 will change from having 4 to only 2 persons of working age for each aged 65+. There is thus a widespread assumption that Europe’s population ageing will lead to a demographic deficit, whereby working age population is insufficient to support the increasing proportion of older dependants. In addition, the internationalisation of the skills market may also encourage European skilled workers to move outside the region and reduce Europe’s ability to attract skilled migrants. However, future changes in the labour market are unknown. Technological advances may reduce the number of workers required to support the economy, and the pool of workers may grow through increased female participation, lowering entry age into work, or raising retirement age. The determining factor will be the ability of the EU to adapt to its new demographic future.«

Prof. Sarah HarperDirector of the Oxford Institute of Population Ageing, University of Oxford