Advice

Masterclass: How to support financial wellbeing at work

28 Sep 2019 By Julie Provino

Helping employees manage their finances is key to maintaining good mental health, says Julie Provino 

The realisation that good mental health has a positive impact on employees’ productivity is gradually drawing organisations’ attention to financial wellbeing. Despite falling underneath the health and wellness ‘umbrella’, some companies don’t think financial wellbeing is important or their responsibility – but money is a concern shared by everyone, regardless of their job title.

It’s not just a buzzword, it’s not a blanketed mindfulness approach and it is certainly not the latest fad; financial wellbeing is a key factor in your employees’ mental health. 

Most businesses will implement financial planning, which includes pensions, income protection and life insurance. If they can afford it, some also make a financial adviser available to the team. 

Alternatively, there are providers that can offer portfolio management of personal finance, which is an increasing trend in the financial wellness landscape. The draw of this is the ability to adapt to preference, as some people like to discuss finances face to face and others prefer to receive an audit or report. 

The strongest solution has human elements to it, and having a financial adviser physically present to highlight to employees what support tools are available, such as how to receive childcare credits or offset their commuting allowance, can be very effective. 

The key to implementing a financial wellbeing strategy is remembering that your company is full of individuals with individual needs. It’s not about providing a one-stop solution, more a consultative approach. However, the first move should be made by HR rather than waiting for staff surveys to identify the need. 

When you introduce a new financial wellbeing strategy, try to keep it as digestible as possible and keep it as part of the benefit package rather than making a big wave in the organisation, unless there have been significant events that warrant a solution. 

Finally, get external advice and speak to providers: there are some options that are tax-free. It’s a bit of a no-brainer – if it doesn’t cost anything, why not do it?

Julie Provino is founder of VeryHR

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