Financial Wellness Trends

Financial wellness is something not all employers take into consideration for their employees, but a recent 2019 survey revealed that 53% of employers now offer wellness programs – up nearly 24% since 2015![1] However, only 55% of employees rate their personal financial wellness as good or excellent – significantly lower from merely a year ago.[2] Between saving for retirement, gender gaps in savings and earnings, and debts, a majority of people are struggling to find positive financial wellness.

 

Identifying Financial Wellness Hurdles

Part of solving a problem is identifying the source of such problem. To address the struggles of financial wellness, it is important to understand what hardships are impacting it. Here are some of the top causes of crippling financial wellness.

 

Debt. The workforce has continuously evolved with the technological advancements and shifts in hiring and recruiting methods. As such, many people are crippled by student loan debt or poor credit decisions made in their youth. In 2018, the United States reached a record-breaking household debt of $13.21 trillion.[3] Millennial debt is attributed to credit cards and student loans. Those aged 36-44 carry debt from mortgages and credit cards. Developing innovative ways to save and address these debts at earlier stages can revive financial wellness.

 

Healthcare. There are seemingly two prongs of the healthcare obstacle in financial wellness. The first prong is simply the financial challenge of healthcare. Most people do not have the funds to pay for their healthcare needs, and unfortunately, healthcare has continuously increased over the years. The second prong is that many people do not have the health literacy to discover ways to save or work the system to their advantage. For example, 53% of employees delayed or cancelled appointments or procedures with the belief it would save them money.[4] Healthcare has been a long-standing complex subject for a majority of the population, and as such, many people lack the knowledge to find adequate healthcare solutions.

 

Improving Financial Wellness

There are many ways employers can initiate effective financial wellness programs to help their employees find stable ground. With resources readily available, employers simply need to find what works for their employees. Here are some ways that can help improve financial wellness.

 

Advice from a professional. Sometimes seeking professional advice is what you need to point you in the right direction. Someone knowledgeable, connected with other industry professionals, and can offer unlimited resources will help you develop a solution best suited for you and your employees’ needs. They can lend insight to common pitfalls of financial crises and distress, as well as best practices for obtaining healthy financial wellness.

 

Information on financial topics. Staying up to date on topics that can effect your finances is always advised. Whether you read about stocks, loan forgiveness and repayment programs, and other financial-related topics can not only bring awareness of situations effecting people globally, but also provide educational information pertaining to different financial situations.

 

Research available financial products and services. One way to approach evaluating and revamping your financial wellness program is to research the available financial products and services for employees. Services like identity theft protection, credit monitoring, and online banking systems can educate, protect, and manage employees’ financial wellness. Understanding what resources are available, how they work, and the impact of their service or product can influence financial wellness practices.

 

Evaluate employees’ individual financial situations. Distributing an anonymous (or not, depending on your work environment and industry) survey inquiring employees about their financial wellness can provide an honest perspective of the financial struggles they face. Make a suggestion or feedback section to ensure you understand what they seek for financial stability and give you a better approach to implementing a more effective program to assist them. Incorporating your employees’ definitions and your own, you can create a cohesive vision for the company’s financial wellness program.

 

Financial wellness should never hinder your livelihood. Your health, productivity, and financial stability can all be impacted by poor financial health. EmployeeMoney offers a unique workplace loan benefit program where eligibility of a two-year loan is based on employment instead of credit, as well as a fixed interest rate. Take control of your financial wellness and contact EmployeeMoney today.

 

 

 

[1] https://www.napa-net.org/news-info/daily-news/more-employers-offering-financial-wellness-knowledge-gaps-persist

[2] https://www.napa-net.org/news-info/daily-news/more-employers-offering-financial-wellness-knowledge-gaps-persist

[3] https://www.debt.org/faqs/americans-in-debt/demographics/

[4] https://healthpayerintelligence.com/news/how-employers-can-raise-financial-wellness-and-health-literacy