You do so much to ensure your employees’ physical and emotional wellbeing. Whether you offer great health insurance options, incentives for healthy behaviors, resources for mental health support, or anything in between, you’ve got employee health and wellbeing covered.
But physical and emotional health are just pieces of the total picture of employee wellbeing. Employee financial health is an important (but often forgotten) part of wellbeing too.
Did you know that one in three employees reports missing days of work due to financial stress? Research shows that all types of stress (physical, emotional, financial) go into the same bucket. By investing in your employee's financial wellness, you can help reduce stress due to finances and improve work productivity.
Not sure where to start? Here are our top five tips for promoting financial wellbeing at your company.
1. Offer a competitive retirement plan
Retirement planning is one of the most important steps a person can take to ensure their long-term financial wellbeing.
As an employer, you have the power to help set your employees up for success with retirement planning, whether they plan to retire in two years or 20. Ideally, this means offering a competitive 401(k) match, to encourage employees to set aside a certain percentage of each paycheck.
If you are unable to offer a 401(k) match at this time, encourage your employees to set up automatic 401(k) contributions. Just contributing something (even if it’s small) is a start and will help get your employees’ foot in the door to retirement savings.
2. Offer a CDHP plan with an HSA
Consumer-Driven Health Plans (CDHPs) can scare many employees away because of their high deductibles. When offered in conjunction with a tax-advantaged health savings account (HSA), though, a CDHP can often be the most cost-effective option for your employees.
Offering this type of medical plan is a great way to encourage your employees to make smart financial choices with long-term benefits.
Learn more about CDHP plans with this informative video:
3. Offer bonus incentives
One way you can boost productivity while helping your employees improve their financial health and increase work satisfaction is by offering bonus incentives.
Incentives reward employees for good work, so they feel appreciated and valued. When a quarterly, year-end or other bonus is tied to company revenue, that creates even more incentive for employees to invest in your company’s success.
There are many ways to structure bonuses, but as a whole, this is a great way to empower your employees to take an active role in their own — and your company’s — financial wellness.
4. Provide education
Let’s face it, being financially savvy isn’t exactly common. For many of your employees, 401(k)s, HSAs, and even the basics of budgeting might be completely foreign, especially if you have a younger employee population.
The good news is, a little education can go a long way in increasing employee participation in financial benefits.
Many employees aren’t contributing to the 401(k) at the company match or participating in the health savings plans offered to them, simply because they don’t understand the true value of these plans and how they can help reinforce a secure financial future.
You can improve this by offering educational webinars, courses, and Q&A sessions with your accounting or HR personnel, or by engaging a third-party vendor who specializes in employee education about financial literacy.
5. Communicate effectively
In many ways, this tip is the most important of them all.
You can offer the best possible retirement savings, bonus plans, and tax-advantaged HSA, but if the advantages of those resources are not communicated effectively, your employees are unlikely to use them. While education is an essential piece of this, creating an internal communication strategy and action plan is your key to success in improving employee financial wellness.
An effective employee communication plan around financial wellness can include:
- an engaging microsite dedicated to all the financial plans you offer
- creating interactive games to educate your employees about their financial benefits in a novel way
- informative graphic emails to capture your employees’ attention and encourage engagement
- fun and educational digital signage about the resources available to your employees
- podcasts and videos to take complex information and make it easily digestible