Improve Employee Financial Wellbeing
Watching the digits on your bank balance soar high on payday provides inexplicable joy. However, preventing these digits from falling drastically over the month is an art not known to most employees. Employee financial wellbeing is ignored by several organizations, leading to less productive and unhappy employees. As per the Roundglass Wellbeing at Work Survey Report 2020-21, only 10% of the surveyed organization provide debt counselling through EPAs, just 14% offer one-on-one coaching for financial planning, and only 22% offer tools or courses to track budgets, loans, investments etc. This is a huge miss because, after all, it’s hard to focus on work when you don’t know how long you can stay afloat before the next paycheck saves you from drowning.
It is important for employees to develop habits that prevent them living from one paycheck to the other. Long-term financial planning is integral to workplace wellbeing and offering financial wellness programs for employees is the first step. Here are a few tips on how your organization can enhance employee financial wellbeing:
Understand your employees’ needs
Organizations can’t have a one-size-fits-all approach while offering financial wellness benefits for employees. Each employee has different priorities, goals and financial needs. Some have caregiving responsibilities towards their families while others want to save for a house or family vacations. Since employees come from varying backgrounds and have different financial resources, a common financial plan may not be feasible for all. Conduct a pulse survey to gauge their needs and priorities, and offer financial wellness ideas for employees accordingly. Instead of generic tips, focus on providing customized employee financial wellbeing solutions.
The adage, “ignorance is bliss” doesn’t work well when it comes to employee financial wellbeing. People tend to talk in hushed tones while discussing their salaries and ways to manage finances in the workplace. With the right approach, top management can play an integral part in normalizing such conversations, so employees learn from others’ experiences. Before introducing financial wellness programs for employees, it is essential to have a clear understanding of different concepts and options. Unfortunately, schools and colleges never taught us how to plan for retirement or long-term financial goals. HR leaders can bridge this gap by organizing training sessions and seminars that cover such financial wellness topics for employees.
Have an open channel of communication
Once you’ve equipped your employees with knowledge, the next step is to plan a course of action. Financial wellbeing resources for employees enable them to get acquainted with their options, but to bring these plans to fruition, they may need guidance. Appoint a dedicated financial wellbeing expert to help them pick the most suitable option. Encourage employees to reach out to them in case of any queries regarding their salary and tax deductions. Employee financial wellbeing can be achieved only when they have an open line of communication to overcome their fears, apprehensions and doubts regarding money matters.
Offer one-on-one financial counselling
While seminars and training sessions are a great way to discuss the tools required for employee financial wellbeing, some employees may not be comfortable with asking questions in a group. It can be hard to open up about financial worries in front of your colleagues due to fear of being judged. To avoid such situations and make them feel more comfortable, one of the best financial wellbeing resources for employees is to offer one-on-one financial counselling. It provides employees a safe space to discuss such issues with a financial counsellor and make a long-term plan, tailor-made to their needs.
What steps has your organization taken to improve employee financial wellbeing? Tell us in the comments.