benefitexpress December 13, 2019 5 min read

Companies are Adopting Financial Wellness Programs - Should Yours?

Financial wellness programs

The year 2020 is weeks away and employee benefits are the name of the game. Gone are the days when companies had a leg up in the labor force by simply offering retirement plans or standard health insurance. Today’s workforce demands more.

What is more? From comprehensive benefits packages, mental health support and continued education, today’s employees want a personalized benefits experience tailored to their unique needs. They also expect employers to advocate for those needs – and right now, financial wellness is topping the list.

Money is a cause of stress for nearly everyone - and that stress can translate into distracted employees and decreased productivity in the workplace. That's why we're taking a closer look at the current state of financial health and how financial wellness programs could be the missing benefit your workforce needs.  

What is a financial wellness program?

Financial wellness programs educate employees on methods and techniques for managing financial responsibilities including spending habits, paying off debt and planning for retirement. This can be done in a number of ways from group counseling, one-on-one sessions, 401(k) educational programs, or by providing access to digital platforms that help employees manage money. Ultimately, financial wellness programs make you an advocate for your employees' financial security.

The current state of financial wellness

According to a 2017 survey, 78% of workers are living paycheck to paycheck. Even those with high earnings ($100k+ per year) struggle with budgeting and making ends meet. Also included in the survey were these staggering stats below:

  • More than 25% of workers do not set aside savings each month
  • Nearly 75% of workers say they are in debt
  • Of the surveyed workers in debt, over 50% think they always will be 
  • 28% of workers making $50,000-$99,999 live paycheck to paycheck, and of that group 70% are in debt
  • 56% of workers are only able to save $100 or less each month

This begs the question of what can be done to ease the financial burden of today's workforce, or how employers can be a financial advocate for employees.

The benefits of offering a financial wellness program

As a business leader, you don't want to stand by as your workforce struggles -- nor do you want productivity to take a hit as a result. This is where financial wellness programs can be a strong contender for accommodating both the needs of the company and its staff. It’s also a prime indicator of your company culture and investment in your employees, which could aid in standing out against competing companies in today's saturated market.

Bottom line? Finances are the number one cause of stress among U.S. workers. When employees are continuously worried about paying the bills, it can aggravate pressures inside the office, too. They may even begin to consider how you are taking care of them as an employer. In other words, when it comes to financial health, you and your employees are in this together.

Financial wellness programs are quickly becoming the driving force in allowing employers to be a partner in their employee's financial health. When done well, financial wellness programs can improve the lives of employees while helping a company meet its bottom line.

What are your thoughts on financial wellness programs? Have financial health programs made an impact for your company or organization? We'd love to know! Drop us a comment below. Then, check out our accompanying blog on the importance of financial wellness in the workplace.