Taking Care: Employee Financial Wellness

In today’s workplace, employee well-being initiatives are no longer just about diet and exercise. More and more employees are facing money worries, and that financial stress is taking its toll on their health, productivity and, in the end, their employer’s bottom line. From getting bills paid to saving for retirement, finding affordable child care to managing debt, the financial challenges add up, along with stress. Companies nationwide are addressing this epidemic by implementing programs that will empower and educate employees to achieve financial fitness and independence.

What’s Happening?
Anxiety over finances is wreaking havoc on the health and productivity of companies’ workforces and, in turn, their profitability nationwide. The financial challenges being faced by employees today are causing distraction, absenteeism, poor morale, low employee engagement and presenteeism. A Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) study examined the types of financial challenges employees are experiencing, how they may transfer into concerns for the workplace and what employers are doing to alleviate these issues. The findings show that 96% of respondents said personal financial challenges had an impact on employees’ work performance. Furthermore, the survey goes on to indicate that the negative impact of employee’s financial challenges increased for employee’s overall stress, overall productivity and absenteeism/tardiness.

Employee Financial Wellness

Building Financial Fitness
Employers can help employees take control of their finances, achieve financial security and help with their short and long term financial goals by first determining the areas where their workforce are most struggling. Then by providing money management fundamentals, strategies and guidance through educational materials, webinars and seminars, financial tools and discount programs, organizations are helping employees better understand their finances and improving how they interact with their money. Implementing financial wellness programs will arm employees with the information they need to wisely face medical expenses, budget their earnings, save for retirement, manage debt and any of their other financial challenges. In some cases employees aren’t even aware of existing programs and benefits already available to them which can be remedied by communication around financial wellness. By promoting and improving an employee’s financial well-being, they will in turn be more engaged, focused and able to enjoy a healthier work-life balance. 

Building Financial Fitness

Finding Funding
According to the SHRM study findings, the top issue organizations are facing with providing financial education initiatives is the cost of the program. With budgets already straining, and the rising costs of benefits, many employers may feel hesitant to invest in a financial wellness program. However, what many companies probably don’t realize is that the additional cost will bring an added return through increased productivity, reduced medical and workers compensation costs, reduced sick and disability leave and increased employee loyalty and retention. In fact, a Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) study on financial wellness at work revealed that employers can see returns as high as tripling each dollar they invest in financial wellness programs.

Finding Funding

The facts are clear, financial wellness programs have never been more important to organizations and their workforces. Employers need to consider financial challenges when planning their employee well-being initiatives. LifeCare’s Financial Wellness Services offer a centralized gateway to professional resources and unbiased experts. Contact us today to learn more about how we can empower and educate your employees to achieve financial fitness, independence and security.