Marie Foley, Director of Actuarial Services, Health Payment Systems on 03/20/2018
While healthy eating and regular exercise are essential, these are not the only aspects for comprehensive wellness. Research continues to show that people should focus on spiritual, emotional, and financial fitness as well. An important, and often overlooked, component in achieving comprehensive wellness is financial wellness, a significant stressor for many employees.
Financial wellness programs can help employees reduce stress, become healthier, and increase productivity at work. Savvy employers understand the importance of these programs and can include financial health in their benefits packages.
An astonishing 78 percent of workers in the United States live paycheck-to-paycheck. Furthermore, 71 percent of workers are in debt. With these statistics in mind, it’s no surprise that money worries consistently rank among the top sources of stress in the country even above violence and crime.
Financial wellness programs can teach employees how to manage their finances effectively. With increased financial literacy and access to the appropriate resources, they can take control of their finances and prepare for unexpected expenses. That sense of control can tamper the stress and allow employees to flourish.
Stress from debt and other financial problems can wreak havoc on a person’s physical health. Studies have linked this particular type of pressure to depression, insomnia, migraines, metabolic syndrome and other ailments. These health problems can lead to heart attacks and strokes.
Worse yet, financial stress can cause people to forgo proper medical care. NBC News reported that one in five Americans had paused healthcare for economic reasons. That means this particular pressure makes people less healthy and less likely to receive care for those concerns.
Financial wellness programs not only diminish mental stress, but they also increase physical health. If you want a healthy workforce of employees who do not miss work for illnesses, a financial wellness program is critical.
Financial wellness doesn’t just benefit employees. In fact, a financial health program could help your company’s bottom line. PwC’s Employee Financial Wellness Survey found that one-third of employees report that finances distract them while they are at work. Nearly half of these people say that they spend three hours each week at work dealing with financial issues.
“Financial stressors are not only negatively impacting employees but are costing employers,” Kent E. Allison of PwC said. “Stressed employees are found to be less productive, take time off from work to deal with their finances, and are more likely to cite health issues caused by financial stress.”
Companies with a younger workforce may see this effect even more. 67 percent of millennials report that their financial stress hinders their ability to focus at work. No matter the age of your employees, their worries about money could cause problems for your company.
While financial wellness is relatively new on the employee-benefits scene, it’s becoming more prevalent. Businesses of all sizes recognize that financial health programs can reduce stress, increase health, and boost the bottom line.
Health Payment Systems can help you see these benefits in your business. Learn more about how their innovative solutions can make healthcare payments easy for your employees.