Debbie Lovewell-Tuck: Optimising financial education

As our Financial Education Week draws to a close, it is time to reflect on some of the trends and issues currently shaping this area of the benefits market.

How financially savvy are the employees in your workforce? How many have adequate plans in place to save enough for their retirement, build a savings pot for other uses, budget effectively or free themselves from debt?

In almost all organisations, there will be staff who require assistance in these areas. With rising prices often continuing to outstrip inflation, an increase in in-work poverty, the prevalence of payday loans, a willingness to buy on credit and the ever-present need to save more for retirement, financial education has never been more important.

But every employee’s needs will be different. Some will require guidance and information about how best to save for their desired retirement, while others will have a more immediate need for information and support about how to budget for the short-term and clear existing debts. These needs will also inevitably change throughout an employee’s life, so ensuring a financial education programme caters to all in terms of content and delivery mechanisms is key.

Financial education can also be a key way of ensuring employees fully understand, and make the most of, the other benefits available to them. As well as more traditional financial products, it can be used to help employees select the most appropriate benefits for their circumstances via flexible and voluntary schemes.

The methods with which financial education is delivered should also be a key consideration for employers; getting the right mechanism can significantly impact engagement rates and, ultimately, how successful a programme is in increasing financial knowledge.

Selecting the right methods of education will largely depend on factors such as the workforce demographic, working patterns and locations, levels of existing knowledge, and the issues an employer is aiming to tackle.

Whatever your workforce’s financial needs, Financial Education Week was designed to help you take this to the next level through exclusive insights and opinions uncovering best practice in this area. These included:

Debbie Lovewell-Tuck
Tweet: @DebbieLovewell