How to Cultivate Employee Financial Literacy

By Emma Worden | financial literacy | September 20, 2022

Nowadays, every business owner is aware that the key to running a successful company lies in making the employees happy, engaged, and motivated. However, many people still look at this issue as an activity that can be handled with the use of engagement activities focused on professional challenges.

On the other hand, the modern business world moves in a much more holistic direction and realizes that employees’ private and professional lives are inseparable and mutually dependent. Companies that want to have engaged employees need to help them solve personal challenges as well.

That brings us to the issue of financial literacy and financial challenges, which are some of the most critical issues faced by countless workers around the globe. Let’s see what your organization can do to make these challenges easier.

Get employees familiar with basic financial terms

According to recent surveys, the financial literacy of the US workforce is at an all-time low, with only 24% of Millennials, who make up the majority of the present-day labor pool, demonstrating any knowledge about basic financial terms and practices. Therefore, if you want to improve your workers’ financial literacy, prevent them from living from paycheck to paycheck, encourage them to develop healthy habits and emergency funds, and overall improve their well-being, you need to start with the very basics. Throw then a group of seminars that will get them through financial A to Z and prepare them for the next steps.

Establish a company-wide financial wellness program

Of course, for such an initiative to take root, you will need to know what topics your financial plan will cover and what goals you should pursue. In both cases, you will need to collect feedback from your employees. Since teambuilding was always one of the most powerful ways to keep employees engaged, it would be prudent to leave this duty to worker committees and let them determine in what areas they require the most aid. Once you get these results, you should use your accounting and finance teams to devise company-wide wellness policies your employees can use as a tool for solving financial issues.

Handle the insurance issues

Generally speaking, insurance plays a very important place in our lives. However, countless insurance companies will use this fact to sell people insurance products that have no real value or without their explicit consent. Your company can aid the employees in this regard as well. First, you should educate the staff about these unethical practices. If they suspect they have been scammed, you should point them to people who can help them refund junk insurance. Second, see if you can reach out to insurance companies, get the group price for your workers, and let your legal team handle this sensitive duty.

Encourage good financial habits

Of course, you can’t determine how your employees will spend their money. But, you should do your best to encourage each worker to make steps in the right direction. So, do your best to create a benefit program that will motivate your staff to improve their knowledge of good financial practices or even agree to allocate a portion of their salary directly to debt repayment or savings accounts. Bigger achievements like repaying the debt, or reaching the monthly financial goals should be rewarded with more substantial rewards in the form of one-time payments, days off, or some other form of incentive.

Leverage the company’s resources

Maintaining good financial habits and becoming more proficient in financial issues requires a lot of time, tools, and experience your employees don’t always have at their disposal. Do your best then to allow them to use your company’s tools and resources to fill in taxes, do accounting, perform monthly budgeting and learn more about financial practices from your accounting staff. All these things won’t take too much time but can prove to be incredibly beneficial in the long run. Furthermore, the more integral part your business stars playing in workers’ lives, the more motivated they will feel to work at their peak level.

Measure, document, and evaluate

Last but not least, we would like to remind you that, much like all other initiatives you are going to make, efforts made to improve employees’ financial literacy and encourage responsible financial habits need to be closely observed, documented, measured, and evaluated. If you want these moves to have a long-term effect, you can’t turn them into a one-time effort. Therefore, your strategies, as well as goals, will constantly need to be refocused and reevaluated. Having a compiled track record of all the steps you have previously taken will give you an excellent foundation for creating new approaches.

So, there you have it – the top six simplest ways to encourage your workers to improve financial literacy and develop responsible financial habits. Even though this may sound a bit obtrusive, poor personal finances can cause all sorts of problems ranging from higher absenteeism to compromised performance that have very tangible consequences for your organization. It is only natural than for you to take a greater interest in these issues and help your workers sort them out. The tips we gave you should definitely set you on the right track.