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5 Ways to Put Financial Wellbeing on the Workplace Forefront
Every organization knows how important it is to protect employees’ physical and mental health. After all, if they’re not healthy they’re not happy, and if they’re not happy, they are distracted, and that will start to decrease agency effectiveness. But it’s not just about physical and mental health. You also need to understand the best ways to put financial wellbeing at the forefront of your workplace.
What is Financial Wellbeing?
Though you may not realize it, many of your employees may be suffering from money-related anxiety right now. Some people are not equipped with skills or resources to manage their finances adequately. It might begin with a late or missed payment, but it can soon escalate until it gets out of control and becomes overwhelming for their employee wellbeing.
What are the steps to good financial health?
- Maintaining control: If your employees can pay all their bills on time, cover their monthly expenses and still have some money left over, they are not only maintaining control of their finances they have a sense of freedom because they’re not just living from paycheck to paycheck.
- Having a safety net: Unexpected expenses can and will arise from time to time, and they can have disastrous effects if the people you employ are already struggling financially. Having a shock absorber such as insurance, savings, or family members who can help in times of need, can help employees feel more confident and secure about their future finances.
- Meeting goals: Many of your employees may not have a financial schedule, this means they constantly have to worry about how they are going to make ends meet. Once they can set financial goals and work towards them, they will be getting closer to financial freedom down the road.
- Staying flexible: If your employees do not have the financial freedom to make choices that will enhance their quality of life, they will quickly become unmotivated and depressed. Being able to dine out or take a well-earned vacation can make such a big difference to their overall wellbeing.
Each person you employ has a unique financial situation, and their perspective on it depends upon a wide range of factors, not just their salary. Things like age, gender, and social influences all come into play. As an employer its vital that you get ahead of the curve when it comes to tackling employee financial stress not only to help them but also so your organization can flourish.
How to Boost your Employee’s Financial Wellbeing
If you wish to strengthen your employee’s financial wellbeing, you need several strategies to help you achieve this goal. These include:
1. Breaking Down Barriers
According to the Center for Financial Services Innovation (CFSI), as many as 85 percent of Americans feel anxious about their current financial situation and say that this stress interferes with their work. Employees who are stressed can’t concentrate on the tasks at hand, they take longer to complete projects and are more likely to make mistakes. While employees are aware of these financial problems, many of them say that their employers are not offering enough support. Despite this, employees would be willing to discuss their financial worries if enough information and help were available.
As a leader in your organization, you have a responsibility to open these lines of communication, so that employees can build a strong social network within the workplace; one in which employees feel comfortable discussing their concerns and are encouraged to seek advice. A great way to do this is by setting up weekly or monthly meetings or arranging educational seminars where employees can ask questions about their finance options.
2. Getting Started with Financially-focused Employee Benefits
Think about the different factors that affect financial wellbeing: stage of life, gender, and marital status and income are just a few, which is why it’s so different for everyone. For example, many young people who are just starting out in their career are struggling to pay back student loans, while those employees who are in their mid to late 40s are more likely to be worried about being able to put enough money into a retirement fund.
To help offset these concerns, you can offer a range of employee benefits which will help your employees get a firmer grip on their finances, such as Income Protection and, Life insurance and Critical Illness insurance. These incentives provide employees with great financial security, which means they also increase their financial wellbeing.
One financial wellbeing solution does not fit all. To give your employees the best financial opportunities, you’ll need to offer a range of customizable solutions. Finding the best options can be a challenge which is why the best solution is to seek advice from experts. They can help you provide things like subsidized memberships and yearly leave buy-back schemes in combination with longer-term financial security, such as life insurance and workplace savings schemes.
3. The Benefits of Workplace Saving Schemes
Helping your employees invest in their own financial security is to everyone’s benefit. And while this may not be your area of expertise, there are plenty of resources and consultants out there to help you offer free, detailed advice to employees. Topics range from minimizing risk and maximizing savings to how to diversify investment portfolios. And while workplace saving schemes may not be right for everyone, it’s good to let your team know that they are available.
It’s crucial to educate your employees through discussion and resources so that they can make informed financial decisions.
4. Why it Makes Sense to Use Financial Technology
Anyone with a smartphone can take advantage of a wide range of financial technology, like banking and investment apps, making it much more convenient to control finances. By encouraging your employees to use these apps and integrate them with their current employee benefits you can help them shake off financial stress and achieve their financial goals.
There’s a lot more to financial technology than merely checking banks accounts. Your employees can also use them to keep abreast of their budgeting and spending, receive reminders when bills are due, and alerts when they overspend. The apps are user-friendly, so even people who haven’t used them before will soon get the hang of them.
5. Invite the Experts In
You’re busy running the agency and don’t have time to talk to all your employees about their financial health, that’s why you need to invite in experts to take on this role. Whether they are delivering a group seminar or setting up individual counseling, financial experts can help employees gain a solid understanding of the best ways forward and can give them the confidence to control their finances.
Alternatively, you could offer Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) for employees who are searching for more advanced support. EAPs provide a means of confidential interpersonal contact with specialists who can suggest new ways of managing financial difficulties.
As a leader, you have a responsibility to ensure financial wellbeing in the workplace. You can do so by providing employees with sufficient resources to attain financial security. That way you can not only benefit the members of your workforce, but you will also increase employee engagement, retention, and productivity, ensuring that your agency runs more efficiently.