7 December 2021
Findings from our 2021 research highlight the enormous toll that the pandemic has taken on mental, physical, and financial wellbeing.
With almost 1 in 4 saying they were unhappy with their financial health (24%), and their mental health (23%). Covid has created a stark divide between those that have coped well and have had their finances positively impacted and those who have found themselves in severe difficulty.
While many employees will have valued the security of their existing roles throughout the uncertainty of the pandemic, it’s only now that things are starting to return to normal that employees are reassessing their experience of the last 18 months and their prospects for the future.
The pandemic has fed into shifting many households’ professional, financial and mental wellbeing goals. Undervalued and poorly supported employees may look to move to jobs that better align with their new-found lifestyle aspirations.
While businesses have a lot on their agenda as they try and stay resilient in the face of their own financial and business pressures, they equally have a responsibility to support their employees to ensure they retain their talent and enable them to perform to the best of their abilities.
Understanding and listening to employees, the concerns they have and what help they need is the first step that businesses should take to develop an effective programme around financial education and wellbeing. Employers have a key role to play in helping to build knowledge and awareness among staff of how to save more, including promoting workplace savings schemes, while at the same time rewarding those who are putting additional savings into pensions through incentive schemes.
- 1 in 3 say financial pressure impacts their behaviour at work
- 2 in 5 say financial pressure impacts their self confidence
- More than 2 in 5 do not feel valued by their employer
- More than half do not feel cared for
- 2 in 3 feel their workplace is not a supportive environment for their financial health
Supporting employee wellbeing is not only is this the right thing to do, it also has a direct impact on the bottom line. For a company with 10,000 employees – the direct cost of poor wellbeing is estimated to be over £1.6m a year!
Feelings of underappreciation are felt across all levels of staff – they are not concentrated among those on relatively lower salaries. This suggests that salary is not the only factor in employee satisfaction, and that employers must think much more holistically about the ways that they support their staff.
Ultimately, making sure that employees feel valued, cared for and secure in their jobs will be essential for employee retention and the future strategy of the organisation now that the effects of the pandemic are beginning to ease, and the job market starts to become more buoyant.