How to Support Financial Wellbeing in the Workplace during World Mental Health DayOctober 9, 2023
For this year’s World Mental Health Day, businesses should consider how implementing services and resources to help aid their employee’s financial wellbeing may impact the overall wellbeing of their employees.
Worry and stress over personal finances are known to have a detrimental effect on mental health and wellbeing. Studies shows that well over half (59 percent) of people living in the UK say the cost of living or a change in personal finances has had a negative impact on their mental health over the past year.
According to the CIPD’s latest research (published September 2023), which examined trends in staff health and wellbeing as well as sickness absences, mental ill health is one of the top-three causes of short-term workplace absence (39 percent) and the number-one cause of long-term absence (63 percent).
Employers are being urged to make wellbeing a “shared responsibility”, not least as without effective support, mental health conditions can affect an individual’s confidence and concentration at work, leading to a decline in their productivity, as well as more frequent absences.
Based on data recorded in 2022, just one-third of UK working adults were offered physical or emotional wellbeing support by their employer. This is despite growing numbers of people struggling to make financial ends meet amidst the record-breaking high cost of living that, in particular, is impacting all manner of day-to-day purchases and home running costs including food, gas and electricity, petrol, home and car insurance, mortgage interest rates and residential rental fees.
Four tips for supporting workers’ financial wellbeing
The definition of a ‘responsible employer’ means different things to different people, but we believe the most supportive employers are those that invest in a robust and scoping employee wellbeing programme and strategy that deliver the type of help and support workers need now.
Here are HIVE360’s top tips to creating the best, most valuable support for employees:
1. Focus on financial wellbeing
Financial stress can significantly impact employees’ overall wellbeing and productivity. Providing discounts on essential and non-essential expenses, employees will feel less pressure from rising interest rates. With their monthly wage going further, employees won’t feel the need to look elsewhere for a higher salary to make ends meet! Offering employee discount benefits empowers staff to make smarter financial choices and stretch their hard-earned money further. Discounts on everyday expenses such as groceries, entertainment, and transportation can help alleviate financial burdens, leading to improved financial health, higher productivity levels and, best of all, happier employees.
2. Employee Wellbeing
To be effective and relevant, employee wellbeing initiatives should include guidance and signposting to help employees with their physical, emotional, financial and mental health and wellbeing. Things like quick access to GPs and mental health counsellors are vital, along with savings on gym memberships, restaurant deals, and entertainment offers, mean employees can engage in enriching experiences during their free time without straining their purse strings. This type of wellbeing support contributes to higher job satisfaction and a happier, more engaged workforce.
3. Employee Assistance Programmes (EAP)
EAPs support employees in a range of ways, the most important being helping boost employee wellbeing and productivity. EAP’s are excellent resources that suit businesses of all shapes and sizes to deliver against this strategy and build and maintain a healthy, happy, loyal, and productive workforce. Supporting employees to remain in work and to be healthy, increases productivity, reduces absenteeism, and is a valuable recruitment and retention tool.
4. Perks & Benefits
Employees are increasingly focused on the benefits a company can offer over and above their basic pay and that improve their work-life balance and overall wellbeing before accepting a job offer. Among the huge range of benefits a company can offer, employee discount benefits are a powerful strategy that enhances the overall employee experience. Employee discount benefits are special offers or reductions provided exclusively to staff on various products or services. This could range from discounts at local restaurants, special gym membership rates, and reduced tech prices to exclusive travel or leisure activities offers.
If you’re looking for more ways to support your employees and their financial wellbeing, our dedicated employee benefits app Engage, which works in partnership with our online Engagement Hub, can help. Take a look at what HIVE360 can offer your business and staff here.
Visit the Mind website for more information about World Mental Health Day 2023: World Mental Health Day – Mind