Only 10% of employee respondents believe their employer is concerned about their financial wellbeing, according to research by Barclays Corporate and Employer Solutions (C&ES).
Its Financial wellbeing: the last taboo in the workplace? research, which surveyed more than 2,100 UK employees and 100 employers, found that more than two-thirds (69%) of employer respondents believe their employees feel the organisation is concerned about their financial wellbeing,
The report called for employers to tackle the taboo of talking about finances in the workplace and urged them to consider how they can help their staff become more financially savvy and better equipped to manage their personal finances.
It found that 17% of employee respondents would value more guidance from their employer around managing their finances.
The research applied four financial health categories to respondents: comfortable, coasting, balancing and slipping.
Nearly six in ten (59%) respondents are in the ‘balancing’ category, focusing on managing their current financial situation rather than saving for the future.
More than one in ten (11%) fall into the ‘slipping’ category, with no savings and regularly spending more than they earn.
The research also found:
- 46% of employee respondents worry about their finances, while just 35% feel optimistic about their financial future.
- 18% of employee respondents said they often lose sleep worrying about their finances.
- 20% of employee respondents said financial problems often interfere with their work.
Katharine Photiou (pictured), head of workplace savings at Barclays C&ES, said: “It is clear that simply providing someone with a steady salary does not ensure good financial wellbeing.
“Employers need to broaden their role by helping to improve employees’ capacity and capability to manage their personal finances, through education and guidance, by enabling employees more easily to manage their finances at work and through specific solutions provided in the workplace.
“While much work has been done in the physical and health wellbeing space in the last decade, our research reveals that employers are missing out a vital element in their strategies: financial wellbeing.
“In terms of financial health, our survey found that one in ten employees are in the ‘slipping’ category. If the same proportion of employees had a serious health issue, it would be viewed as an epidemic and the employer would apply urgent medical attention in the workplace.
“The same approach should be applied to addressing the critical issue of financial wellbeing.
“Talking about money is often seen as a taboo subject, not just in the workplace but in society in general. However, our research shows there is a clear desire from employees for help with managing finances from their employers.
“It is imperative that organisations tackle this taboo head on and put tailored solutions in place to ensure their workforce is financially healthy and secure, today and for the future.”