Edition 2023

Foto omschrijving: Two elderly people hiking along a row of dunes in identical outfits.

At what age do workers retire?

Some 84 thousand Dutch employees retired in 2022. Twenty-eight percent of them were younger than 65. Most of them, 63 percent, retired at age 65 or 66 years. Slightly more than 9 percent were 67 or older when they retired.

Op welke leeftijd gaan werknemers met pensioen? At what age do workers retire? 67 68+ 66 65 64 63 62 61 60 59 2002 2022

Just under half of employees who retirednoot1 in 2022 were younger than the Dutch state pension age – 66 years and 7 months in that year. Forty percent retired a maximum of two months before or two months after reaching the state pension age. The remainder (11 percent) were older than the state pension age.

Until 2013, the age at which people in the Netherlands were entitled to state pension was 65 years. From that year, the state pension age underwent a stepwise increase. In 2006 around nine in ten employees who retired were younger than the state pension age. From 2007 the share retiring before this age gradually decreased.

Age at which employees retire (%)
Jaar Before state pension age At state pension age After state pension age
2006 87.4 8.6 4.1
2007 83.1 11.4 5.5
2008 82.0 12.6 5.4
2009 77.9 14.8 7.3
2010 75.3 17.1 7.6
2011 67.3 25.7 7.0
2012 61.7 29.5 8.9
2013 55.3 33.0 11.6
2014 53.6 35.4 11.0
2015 49.3 40.7 10.0
2016 48.5 40.5 11.1
2017 46.5 42.3 11.1
2018 45.3 43.6 11.1
2019 47.4 40.5 12.0
2020 39.8 48.2 12.0
2021* 42.9 47.6 9.5
2022* 48.8 39.8 11.4
*Provisional figures

Retirement age over 65 years in all industries

Dutch employees retired at an average age of 65.6 years in 2022. Average retirement age was lowest in public administration, 65.1 years, followed by healthcare and education. It was highest on average in agriculture, forestry and fishery – 66.6 years – followed by other services, other business services, and trade. Last year (2022) was the first year in which the average employee retirement age was higher than 65 years in all sectors of industry.

Differences between industries in average retirement have become smaller in the course of time. In 2006, the difference between sectors with the highest and those with the lowest retirement ages was over 4 years. By 2012 it had fallen to 2.5 years, and in 2022 it was only 1.5 years.

Average retirement age of employees (yrs)
Bedrijfstak 2022* 2006
Total 65.6 60.9
Agriculture, forestry
and fisheries
66.6 62.2
Rental, other
business services
66.4 62.5
Other services 66.4 62.1
Trade 66.3 62.0
Information
and communication
66.2 60.7
Accommodation
and food services
66.1 61.7
Culture, sports
and recreation
66.1 62.2
Transportation and storage 66.0 60.6
Specialised
business services
66.0 62.1
Mining and quarrying
and manufacturing
65.9 61.2
Water companies
and waste management
65.7 59.5
Energy supply 65.5 58.4
Construction 65.5 60.8
Real estate activities 65.5 61.0
Financial services 65.4 60.2
Education 65.4 61.2
Care and welfare 65.2 60.5
Public administration
and public services
65.1 59.9
*Provisional figures

Working beyond retirement age

According to the NEA surveynoot2, most employees aged 45 to 64 years in 2022 said they would be willing to work beyond the state pension age. This did depend on certain conditions though. Workers aged 45 to 54 years are more open to working to older ages (85 percent said they may consider this) than 55 to 64‑year-olds (73 percent).

The option of working shorter hours was the most mentioned condition under which people would be willing to continue to work to older ages. More 45 to 54‑year-olds (52 percent) than 55 to 64‑year-olds (43 percent) mentioned this. Many employees also said they would consider working beyond retirement age if they could do lighter work, and if the financial consequences of retirement were unfavourable.

Considerations for employees to work beyond state pension age1), 2022 (%)
Redenen 2022
Option to work shorter hours 49.6
Do lighter work
(physically/mentally)
22.5
Quitting more unfavourable
financially
21.8
Health 11.8
Do not know 11.7
More challenge
or satisfaction from work
10.0
Employer/colleagues
support working longer
9.4
Family/friends
support working longer
6.0
Fewer caring responsibilities
for family or other loved ones
6.0
Retraining/upskilling 4.9
Other circumstances 3.2
Unwilling to work longer
under any circumstances
23.8
1)45-64 yrs, multiple answers possible

Noten

Retiring employees

A person aged 55 years or older, officially resident in the Netherlands, who has wages as main source of personal income in November at the beginning of the survey period and pension as main source of income the following November. Pension includes payments under the state old age pensions act (AOW), work-related pension, widows and orphans benefits, annuities, and payments under the Surviving Dependants Act (ANW).

Director-major shareholders are not included in these figures. They are viewed as self-employed.

The retirement age is age in years and months at the end of the first month for which pension is the main source of income.

Data in this article on willingness to work beyond state pension age and the conditions under which/reasons why people would be willing to do so are taken form the national working conditions survey (NEA) conducted by CBS and TNO.

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Explanation of symbols

Explanation of symbols

Empty cell figure not applicable
. figure is unknown, insufficiently reliable or confidential
* provisional figure
** revised provisional figure
(between two numbers) inclusive
0 (0.0) less than half of unit concerned
2016–2017 2016 to 2017 inclusive
2016/2017 average for the years 2016 up to and including 2017
2016/’17 crop year, financial year, school year etc., beginning in 2016 and ending in 2017
2004/’05–2016/’17 crop year etc. 2004/’05 up to and including 2016/’17

Due to rounding, some totals may not correspond to the sum of the separate figures.

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Contributors

Concept & image editor

Irene van Kuik, Janneke Hendriks, Richard Jollie

With thanks to Hendrik Zuidhoek

Editors

Annelie Hakkenes (final editing)

Elma Wobma (general project leader)

Erik van den Berg

Gert Jan Wijma

Karolien van Wijk

Michel van Kooten

Paul de Winden

Saskia Stavenuiter

Sidney Vergouw

Translators

Gabriëlle de Vet, Lieneke Hoeksma, Frans Dinnissen

Contributions

Ronald van der Bie

We thank all CBS colleagues who have contributed to this edition.