Most people have financial problems. And the pandemic may have made it worse. In a poll, 9 out of 10 Americans said they’re experiencing financial stress due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Employees are affected as well. And financial problems can take a toll on them. For example, employees with financial constraints are unable to buy the proper food to keep themselves nourished, so they might get sick.
Also, when employees are always thinking about their financial problems, they can’t perform well at work. Trouble with money can result in presenteeism. Even if an employee is present at work physically, their mind is somewhere else. Employees might also resort to absenteeism. And both situations can affect businesses in the long run.
To prevent these effects, employers need to take certain steps to help employees manage their finances.
Offer Financial Education
Employers can offer financial education services to interested employees. For instance, they can conduct webinars on financial concepts. Some examples are money management, budget planning, and expense tracking. These webinars can also be about things that employees can do to save money, such as having a no-buy month.
It will also be helpful to teach employees about investments. If they know why they need insurance or which annuity marketing agencies to buy from, they’ll be more confident about investing. These investments can lead to financial security and comfortable retirement in the future.
Lastly, employers should consider offering one-on-one consultations with financial advisers. Webinars are often one-sided. And employees may have questions about their finances that they don’t want their co-workers to know about. A one-on-one consultation will be a comfortable venue for employees. Through it, they can better learn about managing their own finances.
Give Performance-Based Incentives
Employers should also consider implementing incentive programs. An incentive is a great tool to improve employee performance. Incentive programs that are properly implemented can increase employee performance by an average of 22%. Incentives can come in the form of money to better help employees with their finances. They can also be gift cards or other tangible rewards.
Some employers may feel like giving incentives is just an additional cost. But offering incentives is more of a win-win situation. The incentives will make employees more motivated. So they’ll get more done and perform better at work. Incentive programs can also address absenteeism.
Provide High-quality Health Insurance
Many people don’t go to hospitals for checkups for many reasons. One of them is financial crisis. Going to the doctor will cost one money. If the doctor finds something wrong, that person will have to shell out more money for medications. Thus, for those who are already struggling with financial stability, access to healthcare is a privilege they can’t afford.
Thus, employers need to offer high-quality health insurance coverage to their employees. This coverage will give them the confidence to get help when they need to, without thinking about the cost of healthcare. Besides, healthcare coverage benefits both employers and employees. Having healthcare coverage makes employees happy and makes them feel valued. And they repair this by working better. Meanwhile, employers can lower their annual tax payments.
Offer Other Financial Benefits
Employers should also offer other financial benefits such as retirement plans and interest-free or low-interest loans. Retirement benefits such as a 401(k) program will make employees happy. They’ll be satisfied knowing that they’ll be able to reap the fruits of their labor when they grow old. Offering retirement benefits also shows that employers care for their employees, which can improve retention.
Offering loans can also be valuable to employees. As mentioned earlier, many are struggling financially because of the coronavirus crisis. And company loans can help employees get back on their feet. Employers can set certain rules on how to request loans. For instance, employees may have to provide certain documents to prove their need for financial assistance. Employers will also have to set the length of loan repayment and how it will be done. The most common method is payroll deduction. And this is convenient in that repayments are automatic.
Offering company loans at low interest or without interest has the same benefits as the others. Employees will work more diligently and be more productive. They are also more likely to stay in the company for a long time. This is good news for employers since a high retention rate can save them a lot of money.
In certain cases, employers are not required to help their employees financially. But with the benefits that come with it, employers should definitely consider doing it.