What is financial wellbeing?
Why should it matter to organisations?
What role do HR and Reward leaders play in implementing this within their workforce?
We at Morrinson Wealth Wellbeing held a breakfast round table conversation at The Shard.
We hosted Senior HR and Rewards leaders to tackle the subject of financial wellbeing. It was a dynamic session where concerns, challenges and ideas were openly shared.
We kicked off discussions with the four pillars of wellbeing – physical, mental, social and financial. The consensus was that a holistic approach was vital to achieve tangible impact. Some attendees were at the beginning of implementing their employee wellbeing journey, others were farther along the road and were able to share experience.
Our conversation covered the following areas:
What is wellbeing?
We focused on the link between financial and mental wellbeing.
CIPD found that ‘money worries were the biggest source of stress to UK employees’ 2016
Financial wellbeing is a sense of security. Having awareness around financial choices on a daily basis can help employees to achieve financial freedom – a freedom that allows them to live life to the full today.
‘Work is the most common cause of stress for UK adults’ – 2018 UK workplace survey (Perkbox)
With workforces being more stressed than ever before, how do HR leaders provide a strategy which alleviates the pressure that employees can feel regarding their finances?
Leaders shared some of the challenges they faced:
1: Apathy – Encountering a lack of engagement from employees in and around the topic. A feeling that employees do not necessarily want to unpack their finances and would often rather ‘bury their head in the sand’.
2: Catering for a varied employee demographic space– A one size fits all educational approach will not work for an entire organisation. How do HR leaders offer a solution that caters for graduates as well as C-Suite execs, Millennials and Gen Z, young parents and retirees?
3: Implementing a strategy that offers ‘real’ change – There is a difference in offering a ‘nod’ to financial education by way of a one off event and inspiring a cultural shift in how employees discuss their finances therefore improving wellbeing and productivity over the longer term. How can long term change be achieved?
With attendees voicing strong feelings of responsibility towards employees and a desire to ‘get it right’ we concluded the following:
Employee awareness around finance is key and employee education is the key to consciousness.
1: Language – How any financial education offering is communicated within an organisation will influence ‘buy in’ from board level to employees.
For HR and Rewards leaders, the language used to describe a financial education programme should be enticing, encouraging, relatable and accessible.
Making ‘pensions palatable’ and ‘savings sexy’ is an important part of any education programme.
2: Differentiation – Key to developing a successful financial education strategy is an assessment of the organisational structure and the employees within it.
By assessing the employee demographic and examining factors such as age, employee life stage and level of income, a comprehensive strategy can be arrived at.
With different tools used to engage with different segments of the population we move far beyond a ‘one size fits all’ approach.
3: Playing the ‘Long Game’ – For organisations, ongoing education is the path to progress.
In implementing a series of educational events created to coincide with timely changes such as Tax Year End, the budget, pre retirement or structural changes – a strong message is communicated to the workforce.
The message conveyed is – ‘we see you, we hear your concerns, we support you’. A workplace culture of confidence and trust is developed.
Our work at Morrinson Wealth Wellbeing involves, at its core, supporting companies in developing a culture within their organisations where money management can be discussed. Our financial education programmes sit alongside company wellbeing initiatives, focusing on debunking myths, dispelling concerns and bringing employees to greater consciousness around how they save and spend.
We all have money worries – whether we earn 6 figures or we are just starting out.
Financial education is a vehicle to building confidence and reducing the worries that bite in the middle of the night. Learning to talk about concerns in a structured and supportive environment can bring peace of mind.
Happy employees make happy employers.
Overall, this was an insightful morning and attendees left the session with a clearer view of the opportunities in financial education.
What was evident through the fantastic contributions of our guests, was that HR and Rewards leaders are ready to take up the mantle and lead organisational culture change around employee finance.
With the progress in understanding and embedding agile working and technologies that are changing the way we work at a rapid pace, leaders are asking the right questions and considering how best to attain and retain their workforces.
It is clear that financial wellbeing is an essential part of the future of a productive and engaged workforce.
For further information on the Morrinson Wealth Wellbeing Programme, please contact Tari Okoye at:
E-mail: [email protected]
View Tari’s Linkedin profile
Telephone: 07487 756935