Work ability forecast

Published 16.1.2020
Updated 16.1.2020

One-off survey

Work ability forecast


Risk of incapacity for work within the next 10 years

How old are you?
How is your health?
How many sickness absences that lasted over 9 days have you had within the last 12 months?
What is your professional status?
How many chronic illnesses do you have?
How often have you had trouble falling asleep during the past four weeks?
What is your body mass index? Body mass index is your bodyweight in kilos divided by your height squared, e.g. 80 kg: (1.75 x 1.75)
Do you smoke?

Work ability forecast describes the likelihood of an employee losing their ability to work within the next 10 years. The forecast can also be used to see how changes in working conditions or lifestyle might affect the amount of healthy years of work ahead.


The work ability forecast model is based on extensive research regarding work and employee health. The data comprises Kunta10 and a study on hospital staff well-being, two follow-up studies of Finnish municipal employees. In addition, the follow-up study Health and social support (HesSup) and extensive European IDP-Work multicohort studies have been used for validating the model. The data comprises 10 years of follow-up of approximately 200,000 employees. This enables defining the connection between health and working conditions and lifestyle.

The risk of starting disability pension within the next ten years is forecasted based on the following factors: age, self-assessed health, the amount of sick leaves in the previous year which lasted over nine days, professional status, amount of chronic disease, sleep-related problems and smoking. The model considers the following as chronic diseases: asthma, myocardial infarction, angina pectoris, cerebrovascular disease, migraine, depression and diabetes. This new and thoroughly tested model has a discrimination power that is similar to that of previously developed models for predicting risk of heart disease.

What the indicators describe

The model predicts the risk of an individual starting disability pension within the following 10 years. The risk is expressed as percentage of likelihood. The risk calculation is based on eight questions regarding the individual’s background, health, experience of well-being and health-related behaviour. In addition to the risk of disability pension, the model provides information on how individual factors impact the likelihood of disability pension. For example, not smoking lowers the risk compared to smokers. Self-assessed health has the most obvious impact.

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Contact information

Mika Kivimäki

+358 50 448 9300

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License

The publication is licensed under Creative Commons 4.0 International -license.