The number of over 50s on a zero-hours contract has increased from 190,000 in 2014 to 288,000 in 2019 – an increase of 52 per cent in five years, according to new research from Rest Less, a jobs, volunteering and guidance site for the over 50s.

The analysis is based on data from the Office of National Statistics showing the level and rate of people on zero-hours contracts by age breakdown.

Rest Less’s analysis also shows that the increase in zero-hours contracts has been most dramatic amongst the over 65s. There has been a 72 per cent jump in the number of over 65s in zero-hours contracts between 2014 and 2019.

Zero Hours Contracts By Age Group

Zero Hours Contracts By Age Group

Stuart Lewis, Founder of Rest Stuart Lewis, Founder of Rest Less Less, commented: “Zero-hour contracts can be helpful to workers who are looking for lots of flexibility in how and when they choose to work – but they come at a cost. With no guaranteed earnings, if used inappropriately they can create significant pressure for employees to take any hours offered, whatever the conditions.

‘The rising number of over 50s with zero-hour contracts could be a general cause for concern but is particularly worrying as we brace ourselves for the spread of coronavirus – if people on zero-hours contracts cannot work due to self-isolation they may also not get paid*.”

Case studies are available on request

Notes to Editors

The dataset from the Office of National Statistics is EMP17 from February 2020

*UK workers are entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) as long as they’ve started working for an employer, are sick for at least four days in a row, and earn on average at least £118 per week (£6,136 per year)

For media enquiries, please contact:

Aisling Gray
PR Lead, Rest Less
Phone: 07900996065
Email: [email protected]

About Rest Less

Rest Less ( launched in December 2018 and is a membership community for the over 50s designed to help its members get more out of life. Rest Less has thousands of jobs available on its site from progressive age-diverse employers across the country. Rest Less is the leading site in the UK to offer flexible opportunities to work, volunteer or even start a new career path, specifically targeting the rapidly growing over 50s market.