A recent report by State Street Global Advisors laid out the key elements of a successful workplace financial wellness program.

Noting that three out of five employees routinely experience moderate to high levels of financial stress, the report indicated most employers are interested in helping moderate that stress and enabling their employees to feel more financially secure. But they aren’t sure how to achieve that.

Essentially, that is why we created PerkUp, as a means of introducing financial wellness in a way that engages employees and motivates them to responsible and beneficial financial behavior, and does it at virtually no cost to the participating company.

As you consider a financial wellness program, it’s worth looking at what the report identified as six key program elements:

  • Understanding the financial landscape and employees’ stressors: Is it debt, budgeting, or just financial literacy that is employees’ biggest concern?
  • Defining financial wellness and how a company seeks to influence employees’ financial well-being. Because financial status varies, wellness programs need to meet evolving needs and find a way to align overall rewards and benefits with employee well-being.
  • Adhering to best practices. This includes implementing benefits that engage and matter to employees, such as 401k matching. Also, using smart benefits design, such as automated features, and segmenting in a way that addresses employees at diverse income and financial knowledge levels. A critical practice is frequent and consistent communication.
  • Exploring both established and emerging solutions, among the many options for financial wellness programs.
  • Overcoming the challenges of engaging employees, getting past employee inertia, keeping programs simple, and doing the most with limited resources.
  • Making the business case, in light of research that shows the financial impact of workplace health and wellness programs equates to up to $3 for every $1 spent. The case for financial wellness can be framed in a way similar to physical wellness, with decreased absenteeism and increased productivity.

You can see more detail in the report here.