Financial wellbeing support is essential if employers want to achieve their HR goals, new research has found.
Almost all (94%) of the 289 wellbeing, HR and employee benefits specialists who took part in the study said they intend to use their financial strategy to help improve employee wellbeing.
The research, carried out by The Reward & Employee Benefits Association (REBA) in association with Wealth at Work, further discovered that 81% of respondents want to use the strategy to retain staff, while the same percentage hope it will help boost employee engagement.
Jonathan Watts-Lay, director of Wealth at Work, said: “It’s time that financial wellbeing became a keystone of workplace wellbeing. This means looking beyond offering isolated and disjointed products that serve short-term needs as the solution, and instead creating a cohesive strategy that aligns with HR and corporate strategy.”
More than half (53%) of organisations plan to use their financial strategies to recruit new talent, while just under half (46%) aim to attract a more diverse workforce.
In addition, almost half (46%) of employers want to boost employee productivity and performance. The study further showed that 44% of organisations are increasing their efforts due to greater employee demand.
Many respondents are considering offering their workforces funding for and access to financial wellbeing support. Around one-third (34%) intend to fund a financial education programme at work in the next two years, in addition to the 39% that do so already.
A quarter (26%) are planning to provide financial coaching, compared to the 12% of organisations that currently do so. Just under a quarter (23%) intend to pay for budgeting guidance as well as general money management, while 43% are already offering it.
More than one in five (22%) of employers intend to fund guidance on financial emergencies, with a quarter (24%) doing so already.
Watts-Lay added: “A three-pronged approach by employers is required. Firstly, they must secure buy-in for their financial wellbeing strategy at the top of their organisation. Support from board members and leadership, as well as from line managers, employee networks and other stakeholders, ensures financial wellbeing is taken seriously.”