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Over the past few years, there has been an increased interest in employee wellbeing strategies as managers come to understand the important link between wellbeing, motivation, and productivity.

Employees are now more likely than ever to consider a potential employer’s benefits package and position on corporate social responsibility before taking on a job with a new company.

That said, the wellbeing agenda has seen a focus on health and fitness but seems to have missed the mark on what financial wellbeing can bring.

Here are a couple of the benefits:

 

Reputation

As identified above, potential employees are now much more interested in things like unlimited holidays and the option to work from home becoming more mainstream.

As we’ve discovered, however, financial wellbeing is lagging behind other benefits. Because of this, those that offer it have a sure way to stand out from the crowd to show that they care about their team beyond the hours they put in.

In an age of social media, this goes further than those already employed, but also helps to attract potential recruits and even to prospective clients who may be impressed by your enthusiasm in looking after your team.

 

Greater Engagement

45% of employees said that they would feel more engaged with their job if their employer helped them better understand the impact of taxes and deductions*.

 One of the key reasons employer focus has shifted to wellbeing strategies over the last few years is because it boosts employee engagement and studies show that engaged workforces are more motivated and likely to achieve better outputs – including greater profits.

We’ve all experienced a day where we can’t focus on work because of external factors. Employees aren’t likely to leave their troubles at the door when they come to work, meaning they’re more likely to be distracted and perform poorly.

Providing access to financial advice can help take away some of the burdens that employees can face. If there’s a money-related question on their mind, they can get the answers quickly and move on, hopefully meaning there’s less need for intervention at a later stage.

Less stress, worry and conflict

If an employee is struggling financially, it is highly unlikely that they will mention it to you as their employer. Instead, they may show a number of presenting issues such as lack of motivation, absence and conflict with others as those experiencing money worries are 5x more likely to suffer from mental health issues and 4x more prone to panic attacks.*

By making it easy for employees to seek the help that they need, you are relieving the burden and allowing them to speak to someone sooner than they would have done if left to their own devices. Burying our heads in the sand when it comes to financial matters can often lead to the issue snowballing out of control.

 

Succession Planning

Done right, helping your employees talk about their finances can also help open up the dialogue between you both about their aspirations, particularly in as far as their retirement is concerned.

An open conversation about pensions when they join the company, which builds over time into a discussion about retirement, allows for better planning on both sides.

For the employee is means a less stressful transition to retirement as they can consider options such as a phased retirement. For the employer, this means that they can plan succession and handover more effectively.

 

One Size Doesn’t Fit All

One of the best things about implementing financial wellbeing initiatives is that there is something for everyone.

Unlike a gym membership that might only be used by one or two, access to personal financial advice is just that – personal.

It means that no matter the income bracket, the employee can benefit. Even if it’s just confirmation that they’re on track financially, this brings peace of mind and allows your team to get on with their day.

 

Balance

True financial planning is about understanding the objectives of the person involved, not financially but in terms of their goals and aspirations. Money is simply the means to the end and everyone’s ambitions are as individual as they are. A financial plan helps ensure that your employees have their financial ducks in a row to achieve the things they want to and make the most of life.

It is this that can help create well-rounded, happy employees who can fully enjoy both work and play – all thanks to the help and support you’ve given them. The employee is therefore likely to see a direct link between working for you, and achieving their ideal lifestyle, something not many employers can claim. Taking such steps to look after your employees can genuinely show that you care about them as more than just a number, creating something beyond the usual employee/employer relationship.

*Salary Finance – Employers Guide to Financial Wellbeing 2019-20.

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This post was written by Karen Parker