In the modern workplace the idea that employee health and wellbeing plays a significant part in the productivity and performance of a business has been well and truly acknowledged. From employee Fitness programmes to Foosball tables, Free Food and Feng shui, Human Resources teams have made great corporate wellness efforts to relax and revitalise their staff.
But there is another ‘F’ that is often overlooked and it is a capital one. FINANCE.
All the health food and harmony in the world will come to nothing if an individual is suffering from financial stress. The only way to resolve this is by getting to the root of the problem. This is why Employee Financial Wellness programmes need to be included as part of a holistic employee wellbeing approach.
To help understand why employee financial wellness is so important for your company’s corporate wellness planning we’ve put together a Top 5 list of benefits.
1. Financial Worries are a Leading Cause of Employee Stress
Work isn’t the only thing stressing employees out ─ money and how to manage it can be a major source of anxiety.
A 2015 report conducted by the American Psychological Association (APA) found that 72% of adults stressed about money at least some of the time, and 22% experience extreme financial stress.
This in itself can have an adverse effect on an employee’s physical or mental health. Furthermore, while chronic stress is unhealthy on its own, financial stress multiplies the impact to an individuals’ health if they decide to avoid health investment in order to save money. Some respondents said they considered skipping or had indeed skipped medical appointments because of financial concerns.
Financial stress needs to be recognised as a significant stress factor in order for employee well being initiatives to be fully successful.
2. Employee Financial Wellness Decreases Distractions and Increases Productivity
According to a 2015 survey (results by PwC) distractions due to financial stress are real and absorb time that should be spent on other tasks. Of the 1,600 full-time workers surveyed, 28% have worried about money at work—sometimes spending up to 3 hours or more dealing with personal financial issues on the job. With the right type of financial services support and advice made available to employees, these distractions can be minimised.
Financial Stress is both distracting and time consuming. When employees worry about their financial wellness they lose focus on their work. Remove this stress factor and productivity will be boosted.
3.Employee Financial Wellness Decrease Absenteeism
Less financial stress = healthier and happier employees= lower absenteeism. It’s a no brainer.
Helping employees to understand and effectively manage their personal finances also reduces the amount of time employees need to take off to co-ordinate their finances.
4. Employees want Financial Wellness Supports!
Employees feel the burden of financial stress, and they want their employers to help support financial literacy and wellness. PwC reveals that 77% of millennials and 73% of Gen-Xers are likely to be attracted to companies that provide financial planning support. While the provision of financial wellness services for employees may have originated in the US, workers in Ireland are well aware of the benefits of workplace financial planning services and there is no doubt that the demand is there and growing.
5. Providing Employee Financial Wellness Programmes
Builds Loyalty and Recruitment Competitiveness
Employees who feel valued and taken care of are naturally more committed and loyal to their employers. Providing financial planning incentives can therefore help to retain staff and reduce employee turnover.
The other side to this is that providing financial planning benefits as part of overall employee wellbeing packages will help employers to compete effectively in the recruitment market.