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Employers could do more to support employee financial wellbeing

UK employers care about the financial needs of their employees, but are they doing enough to support them?

In a survey of 200 employers by Barnett Waddingham, 88% said they were concerned about the financial issues their employees are struggling with and agree that there is a need for guidance. However, 49% of organisations currently have no defined financial wellbeing strategy and 60% do not provide any sort of financial education or guidance.

Companies understand that having a financial wellbeing strategy in place will help optimise the performance of their workforce, but taking action to implement the strategy is proving difficult, the consultancy found. Obstacles include cost (61%), measuring return on investment (33%), and board level buy-in (19%).

When it comes to ensuring that workers have a minimum level of income at retirement, employers believe that the employee (28%), the government (27%) and the employer (24%) are almost equally responsible.

Almost three quarters (74%) of UK businesses contribute more than the minimum auto-enrolment rate.

Commenting on the findings, Barnett Waddingham partner Paul Leandro said that, beyond pension provision, firms are struggling to implement the right level of financial wellbeing support.

“Obtaining board level buy-in is a priority for HR and pensions managers, but proving the value of having a well thought-out financial wellbeing strategy which provides a tangible return on investment is key to this,” he explained. “Only 50% of organisations actually have measures in place to address this.

“Until financial wellbeing enters the board level agenda, and overarching strategies are agreed and monitored, employees will continue to receive employer paid benefits that are not effective at helping them with the financial issues they face today or tomorrow … or the ‘one day´.”

Posted on September 3rd 2018

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