Work and Family over the Life Course: Do Older Workers Differ?


Job satisfaction, Older workers, Work–family conflict, Work–family fit, Workplace flexibility


This study explored how older workers (age 55+) differed from middle-aged (ages 35–54) and young workers (years) in their experience of the work–family interface. Data came from a subset of a survey conducted by a multi-national corporation in 79 countries (N = 41,813, n = 2,700). Older workers reported significantly less work-to-family and family-to-work conflict and greater work–family fit, life success, and work success than middle-aged and young workers. They reported significantly greater job flexibility and job satisfaction but were significantly less likely to be aware of and use work–family programs than young workers. Older men reported significantly less awareness and use of work-life programs and less family-to-work conflict than older women. Implications of this research are presented.

Original Publication Citation

Hill, E. J., Erickson, J.J., Fellows, K. J., Martinengo, G, & Allen, S. M. (2014). Work and family over the life course: Do older workers differ? Journal of Family and Economic Issues. 35, 1-13. doi 10.1007/s10834-012-9346-8.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL


Journal of Family and Economic Issues




Family, Home, and Social Sciences


Family Life

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor