Financial complexities and uncertainties are increasingly common, with many Americans struggling to make ends meet or plan beyond their next paycheck. Our recent SecureSave study found that 38% of respondents had experienced a financial emergency that impacted their work performance over the past six months.
What’s more, 77% of people said that stress over money made it hard for them to focus at work and negatively impacted their productivity. These numbers are concerning for companies looking to secure and retain engaged, productive employees.
Given such circumstances, it’s become increasingly critical for organizations to help foster financial wellness in employees to support their well-being and productivity. Providing essential financial tools, benefits, and resources is instrumental to these efforts.
The impacts of financial stress are far-reaching across an individual’s life, spilling over into their physical health, mental well-being, and job performance. Research has consistently shown that financial difficulties can lead to:
These negative impacts easily bleed into people’s work lives and can impact their ability to focus and accomplish tasks. However, when employees feel financially supported and achieve stability with their finances, the differences are notable. One survey found that 85% of financially healthy employees report being more productive. With fewer distractions from financial concerns, organizations with financially stable employees often experience reduced absenteeism, higher employee engagement, and increased retention rates.
There are several strategies organizations can follow to promote wellness and support their employees’ financial health.
The needs and expectations of employees will vary across organizations, but let’s look at some strategies that have proven successful for organizations looking to promote wellness for employee finances.
No one is born with financial literacy; it’s a learned skill. With only 33% of Americans possessing a working knowledge of things like financial risk, interest, and mortgage rates, the majority of U.S. workers could benefit from more financial education. Developing programs that help employees increase their financial knowledge is an important foundational step for fostering financial wellness. In your financial education program, consider covering topics like:
This baseline of financial literacy can go a long way toward transforming an employee's financial trajectory.
Benefits packages serve as the backbone of an employee's financial wellness. Beyond offering a competitive salary, incorporating robust benefits offerings can afford employees not just tangible financial advantages but also a profound sense of security. Consider offering benefits including:
Making it easier for employees to adopt healthy financial strategies will also help promote their financial wellness in the long run. Some useful additional resources to support employees’ financial goals include:
Encouraging employees to set clear financial goals and providing tools to work towards those goals more easily can be instrumental in helping them become financially stable.
The easy access and affordability of digital finance tools makes them a valuable addition to employees’ financial toolboxes. Not only can personal finance apps simplify financial management, but they can help people keep better track of their spending and monitor progress towards their financial goals. Consider offering employees access to finance apps like Mint, Fidelity Retirement Score, Robinhood, and SecureSave to help with activities including:
Catering to the specific needs of employees can help turn financial challenges into achievable tasks.
Organizing workshops covering topics like managing debt, investment strategies, and retirement planning can help demystify the often intimidating world of finance. Keep these considerations in mind:
Historically, money matters have often been regarded as taboo, making discussing finances secretive and even shameful, especially at work. Establishing an organizational culture that destigmatizes financial discussions can have profound benefits. Start by modeling financial transparency within your own organization, from quarterly business reviews to regular reports on business objectives and key results (OKRs).
Beyond internal transparency around company finances, resources that can be instrumental in promoting employee wellness include confidential counseling services and Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs). EAPs are intervention programs that assist employees in alleviating personal problems that could negatively affect their individual well-being and job performance using tools like assessments, short-term counseling, and referrals to external specialists.
Fostering employee financial wellness extends far beyond salaries and conventional benefits. Comprehensive strategies that combine financial education, expanded employee benefits, and access to a range of financial resources can help organizations guide their employees toward financial stability and reduced stress. If you’re considering adding new benefits to your employee offerings, SecureSave’s emergency savings program might be a good fit. Learn more here.