Employers haven’t fully grasped the depth of concern staff feel about their financial, physical and mental health, new research reveals.
The study, conducted by Neyber, found that two of the three biggest issues for stressed-out employees were money-related.
However, employers think that employees are worrying about different issue. 44% of employers were convinced that obtaining a healthy work-life balance was the most pressing concern for their employees and 33% attributed staff worries to their workloads.
Heidi Allan, Head of Employee Wellbeing at Neyber, says: “Our physical, mental and financial health are all interlinked. If employees feel less confident in their finances, this has a knock-on effect on other areas of their lives.
“This year’s findings show areas of positivity and deep concern for employers. For instance, we asked employees whether they feel that their employers care about certain aspects of their wellbeing. Career and personal development (73%), later life/retirement provision (66%) and overall wellbeing (65%) all scored highly by employees.”
Since last year, there has been a significant increase in the number of employees concerned about their finances, which has increased from 58% to 68%.
The number of employees worrying that they have less than a month’s savings in the bank has further increased from 24% to 32%.
Neyber says that both employers and employees acknowledge that external worries, like personal finances, can impact on work behaviour and productivity levels.
“Yet, when it comes to financial health, only 50% said their company cares.”
“This is less than those who think their employer cares about their mental health (62%), physical health (60%) or later life and retirement provision (66%),” Allan adds.
Jonathan Hollow, Financial Capability, Strategy and Innovation at Money Advice Service, says: “Currently about 28.7million working age adults in the UK are not satisfied with their finances. No wonder – we live lives of ever-increasing financial complexity. We must deal with busy lives and the complexities of major financial decisions, as well as key life events such as bereavement, buying a home or nearing retirement.
“Every employer should care about the findings in this report. A growing body of evidence shows that anxiety about finances leads to poorer mental, physical and social wellbeing, and that this affects attendance and performance at work. When your workforce suffers, your business can suffer too.”
45% of employees and 69% of employers feel that financial pressures on employees impacts heavily on their job performances, with 60% of employees saying that money worries adapted their behaviour at work.
A report from Barclays found that money worries among workforces affected productivity. Solutions recommended to help financially-strapped and stressed employees include better reward packages, better communication, increased spending power and more support for struggling employees.