Work for Tomorrow is a global innovation competition, led by the International Longevity Centre (ILC-UK), which seeks to identify and reward the most promising innovations to address the challenges and opportunities of an aging workforce.

Across the world, societies are aging – and so are our workforces. We know that 1 in 3 workers in the G20 is already aged 50 and over – and this is set to increase to more than 4 in 10 by 2040. Alongside technological advancement, this will fundamentally transform the workplace of the not-so-distant future for workers of all ages.

Living longer can bring benefits for individuals, society, and the economy. Far from being a cost or drain, an aging workforce brings with it a host of opportunities.

However, poor health, caring responsibilities, and ageism in the workplace are pushing far too many older people out of the workplace early – costing not just individuals, but employers and societies. To maximize a potential “longevity dividend”, employers and governments need to wake up to the reality of an aging workforce and make sure our jobs, our workplaces, and our working patterns adapt in line with these changes.

The Work for Tomorrow program began in 2020 with a consultation paper that identified four key challenge areas. These include:

  • Maintaining good health
  • Building knowledge, skills, and competence
  • Addressing discrimination and supporting diversity
  • Adapting the workplace

The innovation competition launched on May 20th, 2021, to coincide with the second annual International HR Day.

Innovators were invited to submit an application and a one-minute video to F6S, a platform for founders to interact with accelerators, talent, and investors. A multinational panel of judges from business, academia, not-for-profit, and public/government sectors reviewed the approximately 50 submissions with five evaluation criteria in mind:

  • Need for innovation
  • Originality
  • Impact
  • Design and implementation
  • Scalability

The judges narrowed down the entries to a shortlist of ten and the public was invited to review the videos on YouTube and to vote for a “people’s choice” addition to the shortlist, for a total of eleven. All the short-listers were invited to a live session where they would have 5 minutes to pitch their innovation to the judges, who then would have up to 10 minutes to ask questions. Nine innovators took the opportunity to join the pitching sessions and share more details about their submission using PowerPoint slides, video testimonials, and other details to bring their work to life. The next task was for each judge to rank the submissions, with the top five moving ahead to the finals.

During the awards ceremony on March 22, 2022, at the UK National Innovation Centre for Ageing, (in Newcastle upon Tyne) the Newcastle Sheriff announced Labora as the winner of the Work for Tomorrow global innovation competition.

Labora is a Brazil-based HR technology B Corp with a “talent as a service” offering to employ older workers at scale. It delivers large-scale recruitment drives for companies based on people’s soft and hard skills, matches people to jobs based on these skills, and provides the training, reskilling, and mentoring environment to help people thrive in new roles. In addition to providing employers with a ready-to-hire pool of talent, Labora also offers a staffing model where they hire the workers to both prove their value to employers and provide an on-demand talent pool. Labora then collects and tracks performance data and provides employers with a dashboard and feedback. And, as part of its social impact mission, Labora measures worker well-being to ensure that work is making a positive contribution to their lives, which is one of Labora’s founding principles.

The judging panel also gave a second, Community Award to BraveStarts, a community-based platform that helps adults in the UK try out and start new careers. Praised for its simplicity and potential to start a social movement, BraveStarts offers a program to help people who are unsure about starting a new career understand what they want and what they might need to get there, link up with professionals already in that area, and build the right skills to make the leap. This award was presented by Lynne Corner, COO of the UK-National Innovation Centre for Ageing.

Both winning solutions make use of a community-building platform, recognizing the importance and power of human connections to engage people and drive change.

Spanning three continents, the list of finalists follows. Links to their pitches, as recorded at the awards event and available on YouTube, are included (the URLs are cued to the start of each pitch and viewing is highly recommended!):

  • Ageing Workforce Ready, an Australian prevention-focused programme to support people’s mental wellbeing at work
  • BraveStarts CIC, a UK community-based platform to help people start or try out a new career
  • Labora, a Brazilian data-driven job-matching and reskilling platform for older workers
  • Maturious, an Australian platform that maps and verifies skills of older workers by capturing and assessing the depth and breadth of their acquired capabilities in each role over their working career
  • Startup School for Seniors, a British online learning program to help people start their own businesses

Learn More About Our Judging Panel

The international judging panel brought together experts from across countries and sectors:

  • Anthony Ariganello, President and CEO of the Chartered Professionals of Human Resources (CPHR) of BC, and the Yukon, and CPHR Canada
  • Sheila Callaham, Executive Director and Board Chair, Age Equity Alliance
  • Rachele Focardi, Expert, Author & Public Speaker on Multigenerational Workforce Dynamics, and Founder XYZ@Work
  • Fanny Krivoy, Founder/ Creative Director, Analogous
  • George MacGinnis, Challenge Director, Healthy Ageing, UK Research and Innovation
  • Bob Morton, President, World Federation of People Management Associations
  • Nic Palmarini, Director, UK – National Innovation Centre for Ageing
  • Mehbs Remtulla, Founder and CEO, What’s neXT?!
  • David Sinclair, Director, ILC
  • Shruti Singh, Ageing and Employment Policies Lead, OECD
  • Jodi Starkman, Executive Director, Innovation Resource Center for Human Resources (IRC4HR)
  • Dr Kelly Tremblay, Neuroscientist and Audiologist
  • Caroline Waters OBE, Deputy Chair, Equality and Human Rights Commission

We would like to see this competition as a catalyst for change. And we will be exploring opportunities to do that as we reflect on what we learned from the Work for Tomorrow program.

They say if you want to go fast, go alone.
But if you want to go far…go together.

Join us and other members of the work ecosystem; become part of a multi-stakeholder community that continues to innovate and to shine a light on what we are learning about how to make work work for everyone. Send an email to if you would like to share your ideas or learn more about any of the innovations we learned about during the Work for Tomorrow program. We look forward to hearing from you and to seeing what we can accomplish together.

The ILC is the UK’s specialist think tank on the impact of longevity on society, and what happens next. It was established in 1997 as one of the members of the International Longevity Centre Global Alliance, an international network on longevity.

Since its inception, ILC has published more than 250 reports and organized more than 300 events, including the annual Future of Ageing conference.

The ILC works with central government, local government, the private sector, and professional and academic associations to provoke conversations and pioneer solutions for a society where everyone can thrive, regardless of age.

Lily leads ILC’s policy, public affairs and influencing activity in the UK and across the world. Her work spans all policy areas, from health and care, to intergenerational relations, to vulnerable consumers.

She has a particular interest in the prevention of ill health and has spoken on the topic at a number of conferences, workshops and webinars. Lily has been quoted in the media, including in The Guardian, BBC Radio Scotland, and BBC Radio Oxford among others, and sits on the Advisory Board of the Age Action Alliance. She previously managed the Innovating for Ageing Awards.

Below is the Consultation Paper that identifies the challenge areas that formed the basis of the innovation competition. A final paper that summarizes the competition and what we learned is also posted below. We invite you to read the papers and to share your comments and feedback. We look forward to hearing from you and to continuing the conversation!

Consultation Paper

Work for tomorrow -Innovating for an ageing workforce

Final Report

ILC Work for Tomorrow – Final Report

Coming soon. Please check back later.