Why is Financial Wellbeing Important?
It doesn’t matter if you just passed your physical and you’re feeling optimistic about life, if your financial wellbeing is not up to par, even a minor financial setback can begin to affect your physical and mental health, as well as your social and work life.
Financial wellbeing is understanding how to handle finances successfully. Good financial health is an essential part of employee wellbeing, and as everyone apart of the employer knows, happy and healthy employees are the backbone of any organization.
Financial wellbeing programs for the workplace are growing in popularity, and it’s not surprising. There are many ways in which this type of program can benefit not only the workforce but also the organization. Here are some of the benefits of a workplace financial wellbeing program.
Keeping Employees Happy in Their Work
Numerous studies show how financial worries cause serious distractions and when staff members are distracted they are more likely to be thinking about their concerns at work rather than the job at hand. If you offer the right kind of support, their anxiety is alleviated, and your team can concentrate on their goals.
Boosting Employees’ Physical Wellbeing
There is a direct connection between financial and physical health, and when money becomes a significant source of stress, physical wellbeing is affected very quickly. Stress can cause many physical illnesses including high blood pressure, heart disease, depression, and anxiety. This will have a domino effect because when workers are suffering from a high level of stress, they will take more sick time, which costs your organization more money. If you provide support now, your team members will have fewer health concerns down the road.
Keep Absenteeism to a Minimum
It’s easy to see why financially-stressed staff members are absent from work more often than those who are financially secure. Anxiety over unpaid bills and late payment leads to sleepless nights, poor appetite, and general bad health. Sooner or later illness becomes more frequent. Offering employees financial support, particularly in times of hardship, can lighten the burden and keep them in the workplace. It pays off to help your team avoid stress-related illness by understanding and supporting their financial concerns.
Say Goodbye to Work Conflicts
Financial stress at work can often cause conflicts between you and your staff when they show up late, miss deadlines, and make errors in their work. Stress can also lead to conflict among team members. The best way to reduce conflict is to keep communicating with your workforce, so you are aware of problems before they get out of control.
Plan for the Days Ahead
Whether your employees are just starting out on their career and struggling with student debt, or they’re in their 40s and having a hard time making contributions to their 401(k), you can help to reduce the burden by offering financial planning advice. As a government executive or HR manager, you don’t necessarily have all the information, but you can bring in experts who do, so you can help your workers plan for the future today.
Kick Financial Confusion to the Curb
Young professionals who are new to the workforce often struggle to understand financial topics like income tax, planning for a mortgage, investing for retirement, and the importance of life insurance. More mature employees often feel overwhelmed by all the different financial decisions offered to them. When you provide resources and access to financial professionals, you are giving employees an opportunity to find the advice they need.
Take Care of your Employees’ Health
Even if your team members have health coverage, sometimes it’s not enough. In the event of a health crisis, members of your team need to have a safety net to cover insurance deductibles and other unexpected expenses. By building a solid financial foundation, members of staff won’t have to dip into their savings or retirement funds, and they can avoid damaging their long-term financial stability. Financial wellbeing programs can help employees budget their income and plan for life’s unexpected events.
Keep that Employee Loyalty Coming
You will notice that workers who feel valued and supported are more committed to their job and your company. One of the most critical factors, particularly for younger members of staff, is how much their company supports their financial health. Many millennials embarking on their first career choose their employer by the kind of benefits he or she offers. So, support your employees’ financial health will make sure you keep their loyalty.
Help Employees Plan for Their Golden Years
Nobody wants to think about retirement when they start a career, after all, it’s seems so far away. But, sooner is better than later to avoid last-minute panic. Planning for retirement can be stressful and confusing. Many team members who are getting ready to retire are unprepared. Some are still paying off their student debts or their children’s student loans. Offering your employees guidance for retirement planning will help them feel in control of their financial futures and increase their financial wellbeing.
Don’t Just Offer Financial Support, Promote It
The importance of financial wellbeing is evident, and you can have a positive impact on your employees’ overall health by offering a financial wellbeing program. But do bear in mind that everyone has a different situation and will need different ways to access the information and to use it to their advantage. It’s important to make them feel comfortable speaking about their finances and not embarrassed or ashamed. For example, if you have staff members who are uncomfortable discussing their situation in a group setting, arrange private counseling or a way in which they can access advice anonymously.
Here are some pointers to bear in mind when you are providing a financial wellbeing program in the workplace.
- Keep it personalized: Make sure your employee gets financial advice that is relevant to his or her situation.
- Keep it moving: Financial wellbeing is not a one-time affair. Like other healthy habits; it must become part of a person’s lifestyle. A program will only work if you keep it on-going
- Keep an eye on how you’re doing: Measure the effects your financial wellbeing program has on your team, and note which strategies are the most effective. Keeping a record of this will help you spot areas of weakness and tweak them to make the program better.
- Keep total confidence: Privacy is a top priority. At no time should an employee’s financial information be shared with anyone outside of the financial advice team.
- Vet your vendors: If you are bringing in financial experts or advisors to help workers, make sure they have no hidden agenda. They should not be trying to sell their products or services to your employees, or they will very quickly lose trust.
Remember that one size does not fit all when it comes to financial wellbeing. Each employee’s situation is different, and as a company executive, you need to keep financial wellbeing programs flexible to meet these needs. You may notice significant improvements when you have an effective program in place that increases employee physical and mental health, motivation, focus, and participation.