Expanding financial wellness benefits and what that entails for HR
Financial wellness benefits are heating up. And in times of unemployment, depleted emergency savings, unprecedented medical costs, a loss of childcare and other COVID-19 related outcomes that resulted in a negative financial impact for workers across the country, it’s not hard to see why! According to research, employee financial stress has doubled since the beginning of the pandemic.
As we all know, the pandemic has changed a lot about work, including employee benefits. For example, the hot employer benefit of the moment is matching emergency savings – and other financial benefits. And in an effort to retain and attract new employees, some employers are adding emergency savings accounts to employee benefit programs to help employees prepare for unexpected expenses. This article will be a guide for HR and employers on why now might be the time to consider expanding financial wellness benefits and what that entails.
Typically, as an addition to more traditional benefits, financial wellness benefits and programs are financial support and resources that are more expansive than the standard retirement accounts and investing information. It often includes tangible support in the form of financial assistance, and educational tools, resources, counseling and materials to provide greater understanding and actionable advice about an employee’s specific financial situation, planning and outlook.
And they’re an exceptionally hot topic right now for a number of combined reasons: The Great Resignation that’s forcing employers to get creative with their talent recruitment and retention strategy; the negative financial impact that COVID-19 has caused for people across the globe; and the growing popularity of various wellness programs at work in general. Given the recent focus on mental health and wellness, and given what we know about how financial stress can negatively affect both mental and physical health – it makes sense for financial wellness to become the next priority.
In practice, financial wellness benefits can come in many forms such as:
While determining precisely which benefits are the best for an organization should be determined on a case-by-case basis, according to a 2021 survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers, pandemic financial stress is negatively impacting businesses from a productivity, retention and health perspective. Specifically, amongst employee whose financial stress increased during the pandemic:
Given that, businesses that begin to expand into financial well-being benefits are going to see benefits ranging from increased productivity, a reduction in the financial stress of their employees, improved health outcomes, and increased employee retention, engagement, satisfaction and organizational commitment.
Now, an already at-capacity HR team might be hesitant to bring in any new benefits that will require even more administration, but GoCo can help.
Benefits – With GoCo, you don’t have to worry about adding new lines of coverage or types of benefits — Admins can easily work with benefits advisors to add additional types of benefits, handle benefits deductions with ease, and run open enrollment 100% digitally. Employees can view potential financial benefits plans and costs at-a-glance, and decide what’s right for them. GoCo’s BenAdmin software empowers employees to make the right choices for their own lives. GoCo also works has native 401K integrations with apps like HumanInterest to make the process even more seamless.