Why increasing employee financial wellness needs to be employers’ top priority in 2024

Financial wellness creates a more focused, engaged and productive workforce

Why increasing employee financial wellness needs to be employers’ top priority in 2024

This article was produced in partnership with RBC.

As 2024 begins and economic uncertainty lingers, the top New Year’s resolution for employers is to see salary increases and bonuses for what they are: short-term incentives. Though monetary increases are always appreciated, a recent RBC Workplace Realities Poll found employees want more than a paycheque. They want a long-term money management strategy — and providing that isn’t just good for employees, it’s good for business.

“Uncertain economic conditions have more employees seeking support to achieve financial wellness, which is an integral component of the feeling of overall wellbeing,” says Doug Crowe, vice president, RBC Group Advantage.

“Employers can identify opportunities to deliver that support, especially given the strong link between employee financial wellness and a company’s bottom-line performance. The fact is, taking care of employees’ financial needs ultimately takes care of the employers’ business.”

Wellbeing: The results are in

According to the poll, 25-30% of employees consider themselves “very” or “extremely” stressed, with increasing costs and trying to meet every day financial needs identified as top drivers. The same poll found that 20% of respondents are looking to employers for access to financial wellbeing resources and 24% would like employers to provide access to financial advisors and debt management services.

In the current economic climate, where the stakes are that much higher for decisions on how to manage money, having money-management guidance from professionals is critical. It helps alleviate worry — and it’s well known that stressed employees are not productive employees.

The survey shows a comprehensive group savings program can provide priceless peace of mind.

“When employers implement a solution such as a Defined Contribution Pension plan or another type of group savings plan, they enhance their employees’ overall financial wellbeing and consequently reduce employees’ stress about that aspect of their lives,” says Crowe, adding that employees who feel in control of their finances “are more focused, more engaged, and more productive.”

“Companies that provide a comprehensive wellness program create a stronger workplace culture that boosts productivity while reducing absenteeism. Establishing such a program is also a strong incentive that both attracts and retains employees — offering employers a significant competitive edge.”

When picking a service provider, choose wisely

When considering the roll out of a group savings program, employers need a service provider that offers expert consultants who are willing to guide them through the process of not only designing a group savings plan, but also enhancing overall employee benefits to create a truly comprehensive financial wellness program. It’s important that the service provider designs an implementation plan that maximizes employee engagement and supports employers throughout, going beyond plan administration and providing strategic insights that make it easy for employers to deliver financial solutions tailored to business objectives and the needs of their employees.

Sourcing a service provider that will go above and beyond group savings plans — for example, providing expert financial advice and resources to help employees plan for the future they want — is critical to the end goal of relieving much of the money-management stress employees report. Armed with effective coping strategies for their financial woes, businesses experience a more present and productive workforce.

Employees tend to use less sick or mental health days and, getting down to brass tacks, are simply better able to concentrate on work.

Expertise in supporting clients through all life stages

RBC Group Advantage is a service provider that was built from the ground up to reflect a deep understanding of how Canadians save, invest, and retire. From savings to investments through a broad range of group plans, experts work closely with each employee and develop a holistic plan that inspires the employee’s confidence in their financial future.

Having access to that kind of expertise can pay big dividends. It helps your employees manage their money more effectively and, in turn, you’ll see that peace of mind reflected in your organization’s productivity.

“Offering a comprehensive program to your employees boosts engagement and improves long-term security, charting a path your employees can trust throughout their career and into retirement, hitting all their important goals along the way,” Crowe adds.

“The paramount consideration for any provider offering these services is to ensure employers can provide the best financial wellness package available to support their employees — because by investing in the overall wellbeing and financial future of their employees, employers will also be investing in the future of their business.”


This article is intended as general information only and is not to be relied upon as constituting legal, financial or other professional advice. A professional advisor should be consulted regarding your specific situation. The information presented is believed to be factual and up-to-date but we do not guarantee its accuracy and it should not be regarded as a complete analysis of the subjects discussed. All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the authors as of the date of publication and are subject to change. No endorsement of any third parties or their advice, opinions, information, products or services is expressly given or implied by Royal Bank of Canada or any of its affiliates. 


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