Has Covid Improved Employee Relations?

In a National Association of Plan Advisors (NAPA) study 85% of employers offering a financial wellness program do so to “enhance the overall employee experience” according to AlightYawn!

While we agree financial wellness programs do enhance the overall employee experience, is there any employer out there who would say they want to degrade the employee experience?  This finding isn’t very revealing, and it robbed me of an intriguing title for this article along the lines of, “The Number One Reason Employers Offer Financial Wellness Will Surprise You”, but I digress.  

So, if the number one reason is a no-brainer, what’s the number two reason? 

Recruitment and retention seem like good guesses.  But they’re wrong.   Even in the midst of an incredibly tight labor market, less than half (47%) of employers list “increasing attractiveness and/or differentiating themselves as an employer” as a reason.

Getting to the Point

Similarly, obvious motivations like increasing retirement plan participation, increasing productivity and even increasing employee engagement were not the number two reason. More important than citing tangible, ROI-centric reasons for taking responsibility for employees’ financial wellness was this: “It’s the right thing to do”. Listed by 81% of employers, doing the right thing was top-of-mind and top-of-heart. 

Times are Changing

Perhaps Covid changed the transactional exchange of time for money between employers and employees.  Maybe they now genuinely care and appreciate one another. It used to be that employers provided a paycheck and whether the employee budgeted correctly, got into debt, or made fantastic investment decisions was on them.  In a 2020 survey, 60% of employers said they felt “extremely responsible” for their employees’ financial wellness, which is a huge jump from 2013 when only 13% of employers felt this way.

Where We Fit In

At Align, we work with companies who don’t just offer retirement benefits to check off a box.  Rather, our passion lies in transforming employee/employer relationship.  Whereas the current work culture is typically transactional, we strive to create bonds and transcend what each party receives from the other.  In the end, ironically, this approach often leads to a better bottom line. 

Whether you’ve always loved your employees or past couple years has taught you to better appreciate the team you have, contact us and we’ll be happy to help you take the next step in growing those vital relationships.