Department of Veterans Affairs
National Transition to Retirement Program
With an ageing workforce, the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) identified that a large cohort of their staff would be looking to retire in the next five years. DVA recognised that the transition to retirement can be both rewarding and challenging, and committed to supporting their staff through this process.
PB Performance and Development was engaged to design and deliver a one-day transition to retirement pilot workshop for the Adelaide office. The program covered adapting to change, planning for retirement, identifying and managing retirement challenges, and leading a rich and flourishing life through retirement. The workshop, based around the principles of positive psychology, included plenty of group discussion, small group activities, personal reflection and a guest speaker. The feedback was extremely positive, and on this basis DVA committed to run the workshop in every capital city around Australia.
Participants included those for whom retirement was in the distance, those who had a planned retirement date in the near future, and those somewhere between. Regardless of the timing, participants benefited from the opportunity to consider their transition journey, and to contemplate their life as a retiree. Workshop discussions inevitably moved more towards the psychological, emotional and social adaptation to retirement than on the practicalities, with participants raising their concerns around mental health, identity, purpose, social connection and time management.