When you think about wellness programs in the workplace, do you think of physical activity, health screenings, or lowering health insurance costs? While all of these things are very important, well-being includes so much more than physical health; it also includes financial, social, and mental health. In a three part blog series, I will be taking a deeper dive into why employers should offer a more holistic wellness program approach to include financial, social, and mental well-being.
Did you know that 65% of Americans are losing sleep worrying about money? How will I send my children to a good school? How will I save for that new car I need? What is a 401(k) and how can I contribute to retire comfortably?
People of all ages are concerned with these issues. And when these worries are on employees’ minds, they’re likely less focused on the task at hand. By incorporating financial well-being into your wellness program, you can help ease employees’ minds, allowing them to better focus on their jobs. Here are six programs or activities you can offer your employees to help them with their financial needs.
Ask your 401(k) vendor if they will offer an education session and overview to your employees about your specific 401(k) plan, instead of a generic presentation. Their representative will know more about your plan specifics and can provide more useful information. Most, if not all, 401(k) vendors are willing to do this free of charge once or twice a year.
College 529 Plan Education
Many employees have heard of a College 529 Plan, but don’t understand what it is or if they should participate. If you’re unfamiliar with this type of savings plan, a 529 Plan is an education savings plan operated by state or educational institutions designed to help families put away money for future college costs. College 529 Plans are prudent investments and are an excellent way for individuals to save money for their student’s education. For more information about College 529 Plans and to find out which partner offers them in your state, click here.
One-on-One Financial Advising
While one-on-one financial advising comes at a cost, employees will jump at the chance to speak to a financial advisor in the convenience of their workplace. Partner with a local bank or financial advising firm, and ask them to come on site for one-on-one meetings with employees. Employees will be able to work through their challenges, establish a plan they can stick to, and have the help they need along the way. The cost of a financial advising session can be at the employee’s expense, the employer’s expense, or a combination of both. If the employee is paying for the session, offering a payroll deduction can make the payment process easier and more convenient.
Loans, Mortgage and Interest Rates, and Debt Education
Many employees are unaware of all the types of loan options available to them and how to get themselves out of debt, and there is always new information to share about mortgage and interest rates. If employees are educated on these topics, they are more likely to make smart financial decisions and not find themselves in trouble later. Partner with a local bank or financial institution to teach employees about this topic. Most institutions are thrilled to provide this type of education to companies and will do so free of charge. And many times they will hang around after the presentation to answer questions and provide additional information.
Life Insurance Education
Almost two-fifths of Americans do not own a life insurance policy. Of those Americans, many report not purchasing it, because it is too expensive and confusing to purchase. While this is not a glamorous financial topic, it’s important, as we all know anything can happen. Partner with your life insurance carrier or an outside vendor to provide an education session on this topic. No matter the age, it is never too early to start preparing for the “what ifs” in life.
Your Money Line
Ever wish your employees had a place to call to ask all of their financial related questions and get an unbiased answer? Your wish has been granted! Your Money Line is the newest offering from financial wellness guru Pete the Planner®. It is built to do one thing — answer any financial question in an unbiased way without trying to sell the inquisitor anything. Participants receive access to a Financial Concierge whose sole purpose is to solve problems for them, as well as a dashboard to measure improvement in their financial behavior.
It’s an affordable way to make a measurable difference in the financial lives of those who have such a significant financial impact on your organization.
Updated April 11, 2018.