Series: Financial well-being

More than likely, the majority of your employees are experiencing financial stress. In a recent report from the American Psychological Association72% of adults report feeling stressed about money at least some of the time and 22% experience extreme stress about money.

Financial Well-being refers to how comfortable you feel and not about how much you earn but rather how effectively you manage your economic life. Educating employees about such things as, savings plans, budgeting and retirement planning, help to increase perceptions of financial well-being.

Your employees with debt will more likely report feeling irritable, angry, and tired. Financial stress is linked to headaches, ulcers, muscle tension, abdominal pain, insomnia, and heart attacks. In addition, these employees will be more likely to adopt unhealthy behaviors, such as smoking, alcohol, and drug abuse, and weight gain. For these reasons, it’s in your best interest to include financial well-being as part of your company’s wellness program.

Provide Financial Education 
The National Foundation for Credit Counseling found that 40% of adults gave themselves a grade of C, D, or F on their knowledge of personal finance, and on a test of five basic financial literacy questions, the national average was 2.88 correct answers. Many people are not sure how to create a spending plan, build strong credit, buy a home, or even save for retirement. Providing basic financial education for all of your employees during new hire orientation and periodically throughout the year can help employees successfully plan for their future.

Give Employees Access to Professional Financial Advice
Most often, people in need of professional financial advice can’t afford it. As an employer, you can help by providing a financial advisor at no cost to your employees. A MetLife study found that 58% of employees in the U.S. would like their employer to provide access to financial planners.

Provide a Good Benefits Package
Offering good benefits packages for your employees such as a 401K/403B, health insurance, Flexible Spending Account, and life insurance will let employees know that you care about their financial well-being. Sometimes the details of these packages can seem overwhelming to employees, so it’s necessary to provide education and have someone available to answer questions on these benefits packages.

Offer an Emergency Employee Advance Program
Employers can promote financial well-being by helping employees with major life purchases. Many people go into debt due to an unexpected expense because they do not have the savings or they are unable to obtain a loan from their bank. They end up putting purchases on their credit card or even going to payday lenders, which typically cost 400% APR and apply a $15-$30 finance charge per $100 borrowed. Offering an Emergency Employee Advance Program can allow the employee to pay over time without having to deal with high interest rates.

Investing in financial wellness boosts the overall well-being of employees, increases their health, productivity, and engagement.

Don’t forget to join us on Tuesday, September 13th as John Harris presents, The New EEOC Regulations: What Do We Know Now That The Dust Has Settled?