Tackling the F-word in workplace wellbeing

It’s a word on everyone’s lips nowadays – finance, often in conjunction with employee wellbeing. There’s so much advice out there, where do you start? Here’s a handy summary of hot topics from the world of financial wellbeing.

  1. Deal with the taboo: thankfully, workplace mental health has come out of the shadows and into the spotlight, and financial wellbeing isn’t far behind. However, it’s still one of those things we don’t like to be too public about, especially in the UK. With only one in five employees just about managing financially, and two thirds of these reporting at least one sign of poor mental health1, they need to get their voices heard. Ask your leaders if they’re willing to talk about personal financial struggles as well as mental health issues, to create a culture of openness.
  2. Everybody’s different: today’s workforce is multi-generational, and as people go through life, their financial priorities change. Even without the age factor, attitudes to money can be as individual as fingerprints. Find out from your employees what their financial worries are, and where they most need help.
  3. Offer the right products: every employer provides a workplace pension, and many will offer income protection and life assurance as well. But there’s much more to the financial wellbeing marketplace nowadays. Debt consolidation and savings products are on the rise, while health cash plans have the double benefit of saving on day-to-day health costs and encouraging physical and mental wellbeing. Employee benefits providers with financial wellbeing expertise can create a package that’s just right for your workforce.
  4. Don’t miss the quick wins: which products could provide immediate tax savings if delivered via salary exchange (or sacrifice)? Again, seek the right advice to make sure you don’t miss out on pain-free gains.
  5. Education, education, education: some people will worry about money, some will be blissfully unaware. Create an engaging programme of workshops to ease current money worries and future-proof your workforce against financial time-bombs. If your provider offers employee communications to spread the word, even better.
  6. Join the dots between money and mental health: if you’re concerned about financial wellbeing, be ready to look beneath the surface. Debt can be caused by a host of issues, from gambling to divorce, all of which take their toll on mental health. Money may be just the tip of the iceberg. Have a clear mental health strategy in place which works in tandem with financial wellbeing to raise awareness, foster communication and signpost to further support.

Need help with your financial wellbeing strategy? Contact us – we’d be delighted to help.

1 Overstretched, overdrawn, underserved: financial difficulty and mental health at work, Money and Mental Health Policy Institute.