Attracting, retaining, and engaging talent is a continually evolving process. To keep up with the changing needs of your workforce, you must consistently evaluate the priorities, needs, and challenges of employees today. Companies are trying a variety of tactics to help retain and attract their talent, such as implementing flexible work schedules, providing wellness programs, and offering learning and development opportunities.
But there is one overarching concern that reaches across generations: financial stability. Despite high employment rates, employees are desperately struggling to survive against the economic challenges of our time. Whether it be student loan debt, rising cost of living, or increasingly expensive healthcare, almost half of all employees report they struggle to pay their household expenses on time every month. Additionally, employees are increasingly expecting to work into retirement.
This problem isn’t just bad for employees. It also poses issues for employers. A third of employees report that financial challenges distract them while at work, so employers are losing valuable energy and time due to these issues.
As an employer, how do you respond to these challenges and concerns? By providing calculated, targeted support to empower your employees to find financial wellness.
1. Student loan repayment
Nearly half of millennial employees have student loan debt, and a whopping 80% of them report it has a moderate to significant influence on their ability to meet other financial goals. Debt is hindering this generation from investing in the economy, their future, their family, and their health. Across the US, the number of people carrying student loan debt has reached over 44 million, with an accumulative 1.5 trillion dollars of debt.
At the very least, your company is likely to have employees (and prospective candidates) struggling with this problem. Benefits such as the Thrive Student Matching Program help employers empower employees to pay off student loans while remaining budget neutral. By re-allocating a portion of retirement plan contributions and proportional company match toward their debt, employees can both save for retirement and pay down debt.
What better way to stand out as an employer who cares about employee wellbeing and independence than to help them get ahead of their debt!
2. Financial coaching
One cause of financial stress is employee’s lack of knowledge around managing their finances. Nearly 60% of employees report wanting to make their own financial decisions with the guidance of an external party. By providing your employees with education about managing their finances, you’re empowering them in a lasting way.
Financial stress can lead to other mental health conditions and take away from an employee’s ability to thrive at work and in their personal lives. The more confident your employees are about their financial decisions and the less stress they have related to finances, the healthier and more engaged they’ll be at work.
3. 401k account
Everyone wants to retire someday. Prospective and current employees value and prioritize an employer that is invested in their future wellbeing, and provides them the opportunity to invest in themselves. A shocking 80% of people are expecting to work into retirement. By offering a 401k program, you’ll be more attractive to many employees and candidates. And in giving your employees more financial confidence, you decrease the chance they’ll look elsewhere for employment. A workforce that feels their employer values their future, and is willing to invest in it, is a workforce that is more engaged, loyal, and stable.
Be an informed leader
However you choose to invest in the financial wellbeing of your workforce, make sure you take time to research the different options available. Ask your employees about their challenges and learn about their specific concerns and needs. Use this information to inform your decision about the benefits you provide.
It’s critical that you consistently and accessibly educate your employees about the benefits you offer. Ensuring their understanding of the high-level benefits you provide plays a significant role in their participation and your corresponding ROI. Whatever path you end up taking, you’ll be making a positive difference in the lives of your employees, while improving your company. It’s a win-win.
Need a better ROI on your corporate employee benefits? At Raffa, we’re not interested in finding you a policy solution for this year. We’ll create a long-term, employee benefit strategy designed to help you become an employer of choice. Want to build a better future for both your business and your employees? Get in touch with Raffa.
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