EL SEGUNDO, CA – In a year marked by increased market volatility and slow economic growth, it’s not a surprise that overall financial wellness levels remained virtually unchanged. Employees appear stuck, hitting a brick wall with debt, lack of emergency funds and inadequate retirement savings. However, the latest study from Financial Finesse shows that the way forward to improved employee financial wellness – and to narrow the financial Gender Gap – could be human-to-human coaching, with technology playing a supporting role.
The Year in Review: 2015, an analysis of employee financial trends based on anonymous data collected by workplace financial wellness firm Financial Finesse, describes a year where most employees have been treading water in terms of their financial wellness. Overall financial wellness levels were unchanged at 4.8 out of 10 vs. 4.7 in 2014.
managing competing financial priorities,” said Financial Finesse founder and CEO Liz Davidson. “They make progress up to a certain point, but it’s the interaction with the
financial coach that opens up possibilities and solutions and allows the employee to get “unstuck.” Technology can’t listen empathetically, brainstorm together, motivate, offer options for dealing with their specific worries and hold people accountable over time.”
For those employees who haven’t shown much momentum, 2015 data illuminates many reasons overall employee financial wellness is neither advancing nor declining. “American employees continue to have troubling financial vulnerabilities,” explained Greg Ward, CFP®, Director of the Financial Finesse Think Tank. “Eighty-five percent of employees who completed a financial wellness assessment reported at least some level of financial stress. Concerns about debt and retirement are high. In fact, many employees first interact with workplace financial wellness programs in hopes of getting a handle on their debt.” Ward suggested employers who offer financial wellness programs consider tailoring communications to address these vulnerabilities in particular: