Financial Wellness Programs on the Rise
Wellness programming has always focused on physical and mental well-being, but another aspect of wellness continues to grow: financial wellness. That’s the finding of an Employee Benefit News report based on recently-released research by Fidelity Investments and the National Business Group on Health.
According to the study, 84% of companies say they now offer financial security programs, such as access to debt management tools or access to student loan counseling. That’s an increase from 76% a year ago.
“Financial well-being is an important well-being pillar, as it’s hard to engage employees on addressing health needs if they are struggling with managing a budget, putting food on the table or managing debt,” said Brian Marcotte, president and CEO of NBGH.
Financial Wellness Options
The most popular financial security programs are seminars and “lunch-and-learn” programs, with 82% of employers expected to offer these this year.
Other findings include:
- Nearly three-fourths also say they will offer access to tools to support key financial decisions, including mortgages, wills and income protection.
- 71% expect to offer tools and resources to support emergency savings, debt management and budgeting.
- Student loan counseling or repayment assistance programs are also expected to be offered by roughly a quarter of the employers surveyed.
Earlier this month, Forbes published 6 Best Ways to Use Your Financial Wellness Benefit At Work.
- Find a financial mentor: Reach out an expert who can help you toward your most important goals.
- Grab a life line: Reach out to a financial coach who can help get a handle on your cash flow.
- Maximize your benefits choices: Taking full advantage of your employer-sponsored benefits is a no-brainer.
- Run a retirement projection: Half of all employees in 2016 didn’t know if they were on track for retirement.
- Get an unbiased second opinion on your portfolio: Make sure there is no pressured selling of products or services.
- Measure your progress: Setting benchmarks and tracking progress is crucial. If your financial wellness program offers an assessment tool, make sure to use it at least once each year.