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WHO REALLY BENEFITS
FROM FINANCIAL WELLNESS
IN THE WORKPLACE?
WE ALL DO.
When more people feel financially secure, the impact is felt
everywhere. That’s what Prudential calls The Wellness Effect TM.
When workers overcome their financial challenges, they’re more
engaged and productive – and employers make the most of
their investment in people.
Prudential’s core strengths in building benefits plans, improving
retirement outcomes, and growing and protecting investments
help workers, organizations and advisors unlock the power of
The Wellness Effect.
Get started at prudential.com/WE
Getting Financially Fit
Personal fitness trackers, on-site gyms
and standing desks have all become
standard components of workplace
wellness programs, as employers
recognize the value of empowering their
workers to become more physically fit.
But what about financial fitness?
According to the eighth annual
Survey on Corporate Health and Well-Being from Fidelity Investments and the
National Business Group on Health, 84
percent of companies now incorporate
financial security offerings, such as
debt management tools and student
loan counseling, into their well-being
programs. That’s up eight points just
since last year.
“As these programs evolve, employers
are embracing a broader definition of
well-being,” says Adam Stavisky, senior
vice president of Fidelity Benefits
Consulting in Boston. “Today’s programs
take more of a health-meets-wealth
approach and reflect a blend of financial,
physical and social/emotional programs
to provide maximum support.”
Recognizing that financial stress
contributes to poor physical health
requires a significant shift in mind-set
for employers, according to Cynthia
Meyer, a resident certified financial
planner and member of the Financial
Wellness Think Tank at Financial
Finesse, an El Segundo, Calif.-based
provider of customized workplace
financial wellness programs.
People with lower financial wellness
are not as engaged as employers would
like them to be,” says Meyer. “If you
are worried about paying your electric
bill because your service got turned off,
you’re not paying attention to what you
are supposed to be doing.”
Across the board, interest in providing
employees with financial counseling and
education is surging, says Shane Bartling,
a senior retirement consultant in the San
Francisco office of Willis Towers Watson.
Employers are recognizing the role
they can play in helping to improve their
workers’ financial well-being and they are
“actively reexamining the services they
provide their employees,” he says.
Financial seminars and lunch-and-learns remain the most popular means of
delivering information, with 82 percent
of survey respondents indicating they
employ such strategies, while 74 percent
provide resources to supply key financial
decisions such as mortgages, wills and
income protection. Just 25 percent provide
student loan counseling or repayment
assistance, but 28 percent say they are
considering doing so in the future.
LuAnn Heinen, vice president of
the National Business Group on Health
in Washington, notes that employers
have ramped up their financial wellness
offerings in direct response to “internal
indicators,” such as the number of loans
employees are taking against their 401(k)
account or how many workers are having
their wages garnished.
At Charlotte, N.C.-based Movement
Mortgage, helping employees develop
a better financial grounding ties into the
company’s mission statement “to love and
Last year, the company decided to
tackle the issue of debt by launching a 90-
day challenge it called “Lose a Million.”
Among other things, each employee was
sent a copy
bestseller titled, The Total Money
Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial
Fitness, and encouraged to complete an
online financial wellness assessment.
That was followed by a series of emails
linking to 15- to 20-minute videos in
which Ramsey discussed debt reduction
strategies, budgeting and personal
“Once employers realize this is a
problem, they feel empowered to do
something about it,” says Heinen.
—Julie Cook Ramirez