Part-time jobs and volunteering are two popular choices for people in retirement. Not all retirees want to just put their feet up and relax nor do they necessarily simply want to make use of the additional time just to pursue hobbies and pastimes. They may enjoy those types of activities but also wish to give their life more purpose.

Furthermore, not all people who reach retirement age can afford to live off their savings and pensions alone. Part-time jobs can offer people an additional income to supplement their savings and pension which can really help with their retirement planning.

There are many different volunteering opportunities and part-time jobs for people in retirement these days. Some retirees will go on and start a brand new career that is considerably different from the job they did when they were younger. It is all about what you want to do and how to go about achieving your goals.

Types of part-time work


If you are considering working for yourself but aren’t sure what to do it can be useful to consider your hobbies. Whether it is needlework, knitting, furniture restoration, gardening, or DIY, many people have set up small businesses and started new careers in retirement and are working part-time as self-employed.

The internet has also opened doors. You may have previously worked as a secretary and you can provide remote typing or bookkeeping assistance to small companies who might not have the resources to employ a full-time member of staff to carry out these roles. Alternatively, you may enjoy car boot sales and have an eye for a bargain which you could resell online to make some extra money.

A useful thing to do if you like the idea of working for yourself is to write lists all of your skills, personal qualities and interests. You can then see if there’s a gap in the market which you can tap into. The additional income you can make will also help with your financial budgeting and retirement planning.

Staff employment

Older workers who may have retired or be close to retirement must not be categorised into specific ‘types’ of work that they might do. Since new anti-discrimination laws were passed in 2006, employment has been radically transformed so that people might continue in the jobs they have done for most of their working life way beyond conventional retirement age.

If you are looking at part-time jobs speak to your local JobCentre Plus or people that you know. As it is now unlawful to discriminate on the grounds of age you should have the same chance of gaining employment as anyone else.

What about ex-work colleagues? Networking will offer you possibly the best chance of finding work if you wish to continue in a part-time capacity within your chosen field.

Most people are familiar with the likes of B&Q and Tesco who have long maintained a policy of actively encouraging retired people to work. However, all companies now need to also take a pro-active approach in their consideration of older applicants when it comes to jobs.

There are also plenty of online resources which specialise in issues relating to retirees including careers and employment and you may get some useful ideas from these websites.

Voluntary work

Sometimes money is not the issue and many people who have retired simply want to give something back and to help others less fortunate. Voluntary work offers the ideal solution.

Many charities and volunteer groups actively encourage retirees to get involved with helping due to their maturity, for their wealth of experience and often their passion for a cause.

  • Charity shops are always on the lookout for staff, or perhaps a voluntary organisation can make use of any administration skills you may have
  • If you drive, maybe you can find work collecting the clothes bags left out for charities or by taking people to the hospital
  • If you enjoy physical labour and working outdoors, there are countless voluntary projects related to conservation
  • You might want to take an active role within your local community so you might think about volunteering to get involved as a school governor or as a local councillor perhaps
  • If you’re a good communicator and ‘people person’, helping out with disadvantaged youths or maybe on the phone as a Samaritan might be just the thing for you

Your local council, local newspaper and library will usually be a good place to start enquiring about voluntary work in your area and there are also plenty of online resources. Simply type into a search engine (e.g. Google) 'Voluntary Work' in your local region.

This is an opportunity for you to be involved in something you enjoy doing. Whether it is a hobby, a continuation of your previous role or voluntary work.

Take away points:

  • Consider self-employment, relating to your hobbies/interests
  • Actively network and speak to people that you know to get ideas and information about opportunities
  • Voluntary work can be great to keep you challenged and busy

This article was written by the career coaching experts at Renovo.