It’s everyone’s goal to wake up each morning and never have to worry about their finances. The burden of that stress will weigh anyone down and when they are your employees, your business will suffer.
Financial stress can impact employees with any income, as making sound decisions is crucial to achieve long-term financial success. Granted, employees should have the freedom to be left to their own financial devices—it’s their money. However, without driving financial awareness through in-house solutions, your employees can be saying RIP to their RRSP, negatively affecting their work performance and, more importantly, their health.
Severe health issues
The concept of stress goes beyond pulling out your hair and grinding your teeth, ongoing stress has been linked to many health consequences: depression, weight gain, lowered immunity, heart disease … and, sadly, the list goes on.
“Financial stress can be one of the most difficult kinds of stresses, particularly because people can adopt unhealthy coping mechanisms as a result,” says Nancy Molitor, Ph.D., clinical assistant professor of psychology and behavioural sciences at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.
The continuation of unhealthy habits, most commonly smoking and overeating because of stress, have been shown to increase employee absenteeism, which could lead to a domino effect of peers picking up their slack and affecting their well-being in turn. You can’t put a price on the health of your employees, but that isn’t to say missed days due to illness won’t reflect in higher health care premiums for your business.
Poor job performance
Peace of mind is crucial for anyone’s mental focus, so you may find your employees are physically present, but wonder, are they mentally? When employees are incessantly trying to multi-task between working and negotiating with creditors over the phone, it decreases productivity and accuracy in their tasks. When attention to detail and deadlines are a factor—like in most jobs—it can be detrimental to your business’s success.
It’s likely their financial issues are the last thing they think about before they sleep and the first thing when they wake up—that is, if they can sleep at all. Financial stress can contribute to sleep difficulties resulting in daytime drowsiness, which can be disastrous in a physical work environment, putting your employees’ lives, and the lives of those around them, in imminent danger.
Lack of commitment
The uncertainty of an employee’s financial future can result in a wavering commitment to your company. If employees are under financial stress, they may feel they are not being adequately compensated for their work, which can be the result of both income concerns and lack of positive financial practices. Collectively, employees experiencing high levels of financial stress can have an overall impact on workplace culture and morale. This turmoil can be reflected in employees’ job satisfaction, workplace conflict and high turnover rates- some of the costliest pitfalls of a workplace. While raising incomes is one solution, financial wellness programs can be a long-term investment in the future of employees, and as a bonus, can make employees feel greater trust in their organization.
Relieving the financial stress
Educating your employees on efficiently managing their finances can pay enormous dividends for their health and well-being, and for an organization’s bottom line. For every dollar invested in high quality financial wellness programs in the workplace there is an estimated ROI of $1-$3 (International Foundation of Employee Benefits Plans, 2016). Scheduling “lunch-and-learn” sessions during lunch breaks with a lecturer to teach the nuances of budgeting allows employees to learn a new skill, while not taking up work hours. Access to e-learning courses or slideshows provides employees the tools to learn at their leisure—especially convenient for those with a long commute by public transit. Finally, partnering with a health and wellness platform that offers health advice and explicitly outlines an employee’s health insurance benefits can aid your employees in reducing their costs, as they may be paying more out of pocket than they should for medical services.
Novus Health Can Help
Novus Health offers employers immediate value through a flexible and scalable health management platform. We customize a program for each of your employees that focus on improving their health as well as providing accredited health resources. Our Health Navigation Platform, integrative Health Risk Assessment (iHRA), and Drug & Disease Management Solutions help employers see improvement in morale which can increase productivity and decrease absenteeism.
More insight into mental, physical and financial health here.