Five simple steps to build financial resilience in the workplace

Whether it’s a broken boiler, a root canal filling or a failed MOT, life has a habit of hitting us with unexpected expenses. Being financially resilient makes it much easier to deal with these financial shocks.

Although it sounds like a matter for an employee’s personal finances, it makes sense for employers to help them build financial resilience. Worrying about money can seriously affect employees’ performance, with research* showing that more than two thirds (67%) of employees with financial worries report at least one sign of poor mental health such as lack of sleep, poor concentration and reduced motivation.

At Legal & General we offer all of our Group Protection customers access to a Health Assured smartphone app, My Healthy Advantage as part our Employee Assistance Programme offering that’s provided by Health Assured. The app provides a variety of bespoke features to support an employees’ mental and physical health, including their financial wellbeing.

These five steps could help employees build their financial resilience.

Promote benefits that offer financial resilience

From group protection to discounts on shopping, many employers offer employees a variety of benefits that can improve their financial resilience. Communicating them regularly and effectively, especially where employees can personalise their benefits can help ensure they take full advantage of what’s on offer.

Put financial education on the curriculum

Providing employees with access to financial education can empower them to take more control of their finances. Seminars and presentations can work well but it’s also prudent to provide access to online content. Not everyone will feel comfortable asking questions about their finances in front of their colleagues.

Signpost financial help and support

Employees often think EAPs are all about stress and mental health issues but they can also provide support with all sorts of personal problems, including those relating to money. Promoting the breadth of support can drive take-up and enable employees to talk confidentially about their debt and other financial issues.

Train line managers

Money worries can affect an employee’s mental health, causing symptoms such as tiredness, irritability and lack of concentration. By giving line managers the tools to identify when an employee is struggling, they can direct them to further support such as the EAP or the HR department.

Raise awareness of total reward

Total reward statements are a great way to make employees aware of the benefits they have. What’s more, from April, under the government’s Good Work Plan, employers will need to ensure the written statement they give employees, confirms their entitlement to sick pay. This could help employees make informed decisions about their protection requirements.

Visit our Employee Assistance page to find out how your employees can access financial support via the phone, online and the ‘My Healthy Advantage’ app.

*Overstretched, Overdrawn and Underserved, The Money and Mental Health Policy Institute