Workplace stress is real. In fact, according to The American Institute of Stress, 80% of employees have experienced ‘stress’ at work, 40% find their job extremely stressful while 25% consider it their greatest life stressor.
Just as you feel stressed from time to time, your employees can get caught up with the everyday hassles of their work too. And it’s not always their job that is to blame.
There are just many things happening on the background.
Financial Stress among Employees
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One is emotional stress due to finances. American workers have gotten less confident about achieving their financial goals, according to this study. Their financial anxiety revolves around the need to save for retirement, save for college education, address family illness and emergencies, and so on. Add the difficulty of paying their mortgage and other debts. All these financial stresses (which lead to emotional stress) can greatly affect employees’ health and well-being.
Creating an Effective Financial Wellness Program: Best Practices
According to Prudential’s 10th survey, employers offering financial wellness programs increased to 83%, up from 20%, from two years ago.
You know it. A healthy employee is a productive employee. Your employees’ wellness is not only beneficial for them, it is also beneficial for your organization. Aside from looking after their general health, it is also important to care about your employees’ financial well-being.
Here are some key practices to promote an effective financial wellness program for your employees:
Provide the right tools
A key aspect of an effective financial wellness program is financial education. Consider conducting meetings, training sessions, individual consultations, and presentations about various topics that can help your employees better manage their finances, such as how to save for their retirement, how to budget and live within their means, and how to manage debts, etc. Through these activities, employees gain better financial perspective and develop skills to address their day-to-day financial struggles.
Leverage employee data analysis and insight
Employees may have different financial concerns and worries. Leveraging employee data through feedback and surveys allows you to tailor your wellness programs to your employees’ specific needs. This also ensures that your employees are getting the most from the educational resources you’re providing them.
Tracking Engagement for financial Wellness Success
It is not enough that you give them resources. To gain successful results, they have to be engaged in the whole process. In addition to leveraging employee data analysis and insight, follow throughs are essential to reinforce all what your employees have learned in your financial wellness program. Furthermore, it has to be effectively promoted within your organization. Otherwise, your efforts and investments are just going to the trash bin. Consider how your employees can access and use the program or services in the most convenient way.
Financial Wellness Programs Employees Want
Rainy Days Savings Account
When it rains, it pours. Everyone experiences calamities, sickness in the family, and other emergencies. But the problem is many employees live paycheck to paycheck. In fact, 60% of Americans don’t have enough savings to address a $1,000-emergency. Having inadequate savings can greatly affect a person personally and professionally, leading to financial stress. One of the innovative approaches to financial wellness is helping employees save up for the rainy days, such as hosting an automatic savings program to fund an emergency savings account. It can be an expensive undertaking for a company to set up this system but you can consider giving them access to online resources that allow your employees to automatically transfer their funds to their emergency savings account.
One-on-one Financial Planning Assistance
Many employers offer one-on-one financial planning assistance to their employees for free. The best thing about individual consultations is that each employee receives personalized advice about many financial matters, from comparing personal loans online to increasing credit ratings, managing debts, choosing insurance policies, etc.
Online Tools for Managing Personal Finances
There are plenty of money management tools that employees can access through their mobile phones. These tools can help your them track their spending, allocate funds effectively, budget, and develop money-saving skills, among others. Some tools even provide learning resources on how to invest, improve their credit score, save up for the future, etc. Encouraging the use of these tools is among the best ways to help your employees become more independent and responsible in handling their finances.
No One-Size-Fits All
It is important, however, to realize that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to financial wellness programs (or any other employee benefits program). Implementing an effective program depends on many factors. That is why it is always important to consider what your employees think and feel about it. Tracking engagement, analyzing internal data, and gathering employee feedback are all critical to the continued success and improvement of your financial wellness program.
Lidia Staron has been working as a writer, editor and literary coach for 5 years. She contributes articles about the role of finance in the strategic-planning and decision-making process. You can find really professional insights in her writings.