Employers considering a financial wellness program may find their timing perfect. Employee financial wellness has been on the decline over the past several years. According to a 2016 Bank of America Merrill Lynch survey the number of employees who are not at all secure about their finances rose from 31% in 2013 to 41% in 2016.
Financial Stress Growing in the Workplace
Employees concerns keep growing with 50% worried about not having money for emergency expenses, 29% scared about not being able to retire when they want and 29% apprehensive about not being able to meet monthly expenses as reported in PwC’s 2017 Employee Financial Wellness Survey results.
An effective solution employers can implement is bringing financial education and wellness initiatives together as one program. Helping engage employees toward reaching their financial goals at every stage in their lives requires developing a program that addresses and supports an employee’s complete financial picture by:
- Teaching budgeting skills for daily and monthly expenses
- Saving strategies for a house, college and/or retirement
- Healthy spending habits
- Planning skills for current and future healthcare costs
Slow Adoption Rates
It may seem fairly straightforward, there’s definitely a need for such a program, yet organizations have been slow to offer one. An ADP survey found that only 19% of companies are implementing financial wellness programs. Even though that same survey noted that 97% of employees whose companies offer financial wellness benefits feel these initiatives have been at least somewhat effective.
Develop Initial Components
Employers may just need to jump in and get started with some initial employee financial education planning beginning with personal finance. Components can address debt management and budgeting to start with. Try reaching employees through different methods such as seminars and one-on-one coaching.
While financial education offers important tangible benefits for employees, it also may have additional positive effects on a workforce. Employees may feel less stressed and ultimately become more productive and engaged.
Source: Benefits Magazine. Is Your Workforce Worried About Money? September 2017. PP36-40.