EXCLUSIVE: More than a third (34%) of employer respondents do not offer pre-retirement financial guidance because of the cost, according to research by independent financial and corporate advisers Chase de Vere and independent research organisation Lightbulb.
Their survey of 300 senior HR decision makers also found that 42% of respondents believe that employees have the main responsibility for providing their own financial education, compared to 29% of respondents who thought this in 2017.
The research also found:
- 24% of respondents think the government has the main responsibility to provide financial education for employees, compared to 35% who agreed with this last year.
- 13% of respondents feel that they have the main responsibility to provide financial education for their staff, while a further 13% believe their pension provider should be the main source of financial education information for employees. This compares to 20% and 9% respectively in 2017.
- Only 8% of respondents in 2018 feel that a financial adviser should have the main responsibility for providing financial education to employees.
- 32% of respondents state that there is no employee appetite in their organisation for pre-retirement financial guidance, and that this is why they do not offer it.
- 15% of respondents do not offer pre-retirement financial guidance for employees as they do not know what is available, and 3% do not understand the value of offering it.
Sean McSweeney (pictured), corporate advice manager at Chase de Vere, said: “It is fascinating and worrying to see the change in employers’ attitudes. In 2016, most of them thought the government should be responsible for providing financial education to their employees, with only 4% believing that employees have this responsibility themselves.
“However, the current message from employers now seems loud and clear: employees cannot rely on anybody else to look after their financial futures, they are on their own. This is disappointing, especially as many employers are ideally placed to provide help and support for their employees.
“Not helping employees could also prove a false economy, in that employers could then be faced with an ageing workforce that is ill-prepared and cannot afford to retire. As a result, the business could potentially suffer from low productivity, succession planning issues and losing younger talent to competitors that provide more opportunity for advancement.”