7 hard truths about working beyond retirement age

Not all employees are created equal

More seniors are working than ever before — about 9.5 million of those 65 and older, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. A recent Gallup poll found that 12% of those older Americans are still working full-time, up from 9% in 2010, suggesting that a growing number of us are trying to hang on to our jobs beyond retirement age. But employers are most inclined to keep highly skilled and educated employees who are the hardest to replace. That's why Gary Burtless of the Brookings Institution, a Washington, D.C., research group says that “the trend toward later retirement is not occurring at random but is concentrated among distinctive classes of workers, possibly among workers who have above-average productivity." Or to put it another way, anyone with a C.P.A. or Ph.D. or M.D. after their name has an easier time retaining their job as they get older.