Magazine

trendspotting | PLANADVISER July/August 2017

Focus on Financial Wellness Aids With Retention

Employers are seeing how the benefit helps their bottom line.

By Javier Simon editors@assetinternational.com | July/August 2017
Art by Claire Merchlinsky

Most financial executives believe that employee benefits packages stressing financial wellness are key drivers of success for their companies, according to a recent survey by CFO Research and Prudential.

The study found that 82% of executives believe their company will benefit from having a financially secure work force. Only 5% said they do not believe so, and 13% said they were unsure. Most executives view having a financial wellness program as a key component of corporate performance, as well as an effective human resource (HR) and management strategy.

“It is encouraging to [observe] that employers are seeing the value in helping employees focus on financial wellness,” says Jim Gemus, senior vice president, distribution and product management, Prudential Group Insurance. “In particular, employers seem ready to look at ways to not only measure the financial wellness of their employees, but also to benchmark it against other companies in their industry. This survey demonstrates that the vast majority of employers recognize that improving the financial wellness of their work force yields significant benefits, for their companies and employees alike.”

More than six in 10 respondents (63%) said that employee satisfaction with benefits is important for their company’s success, and 65% that benefits are critical to attracting and retaining employees. Even if the deductibility of employer-sponsored benefits were to be removed, several respondents (29%) said their companies would either continue to offer the same package with the same subsidies or increase employee compensation to counterbalance reduced corporate subsidies (28%).

Most (78%) also said that employers should assist employees in achieving financial wellness during their working years. Only 8% disagreed, and 14% were unsure. Even more (84%) said it is important to ensure that their companies’ employees are educated on key tenets of financial wellness.

Executives in the financial field consider higher employee satisfaction (59%) and increased retention (53%) as the most important benefits accruing from a focus on financial wellness. Seventy-seven percent agreed that it is important for their companies to measure employees’ financial wellness.

Employers' Views on Benefits

82%
Think their
company
will benefit from
having a
financially secure
work force
65%
Believe that
company
benefits
are critical
to retaining
employees
63%
Believe that
employees'
satisfaction
with their
benefits
contributes to
the company's
success
78%
Think that they
should help
their employees
achieve
financial
wellness
77%
Think it is
important
to measure
employees'
financial
wellness
Source: CFO Research and Prudential