According to the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Workplace Benefits Report, 81% of employers consider their employees’ overall personal financial well-being part of their responsibility. More important than the sense of responsibility employers feel around offering financial wellness tools, perhaps, is the effect on employee behavior and overall satisfaction. The report also found that 76% of employers feel that providing this benefit to employee’s results in a more satisfied workforce and 66% of employers feel offering a financial wellness program fosters a greater sense of loyalty.
In the white paper, Promoting Financial Wellness: A Guide For Employers, Bank of American Merrill Lynch, a Certent partner, outlines 6 critical phases of launching an effective financial wellness program for your employees.
- Assess your current financial wellness program, if offered. Do you offer financial education to employees? If so, what types of education are provided: online content, 1:1 consultations, on-site seminars? What financial topics are covered? Identify what is keeping employees from participating in your existing program and any gaps in information or education that, if added, could make your financial wellness program more valuable and robust.
- Create a financial wellness curriculum. Consider life stages and different priorities of all employees (from recent college graduates to retirement), as a tailored financial wellness program can help each group focus on their unique needs and serve to create a more satisfied, productive workforce.
- Complement education with technology. Online tools and interactive sites help employees build knowledge of the financial topics most important to them at their own pace. Use interactive sites such as benefitsonline.com, education.ml.com and bettermoneyhabits.com for education and guidance on financial topics.
- Provide 1:1 access to financial professionals. In the Workplace Benefits Report, Bank of America Merrill Lynch found that personalized consultations and individual guidance have been shown to deliver better results for more individuals. Providing one-on-one consultations can help people review their individual finances specifically, and it is beneficial for all levels of employees.
- Offer more solutions to help employees see their full financial picture. Help employees map out their finances with various resources including budget worksheets, interactive tools, and other user-friendly guides.
- Track employees’ interest and activity in the financial wellness program. Gather feedback from participants and share metrics with the company. By sharing success stories you can inspire other employees to take advantage of the program.
Financial wellness matters to employees, and the stresses of money matters can have a negative impact on employee engagement and productivity. In today’s competitive job market, it is essential for employers to consider offering an effective financial wellness program to employees as this is a benefit that employees see value in. Implementing a solid program illustrates that you are invested in the success of your employees both professionally and personally.