New Wellness Programs Target Financial Health in Addition to Physical Health
In 2015, corporate wellness programs are not simply a trend; they are now an inherent necessity, with a vast majority of employers formatting their company structure with a wellness program for their employees. The common thought is that if employers are paying to offer employees opportunities in an effort to increase their overall health status, the company will be running more efficiently due to increased worker output and an enhanced company culture.
Some common fixtures of the corporate wellness program include health assessments, inclusive fitness memberships, and adequate levels of health insurance coverage. More and more companies are adopting some unconventional pieces into their corporate wellness programs that many might see as unrelated to an individual’s health status. The frequency of the concept of financial wellness is being increasingly used in corporate wellness programs to assist employees in forming proper financial habits, managing their money, understanding the structure of their benefits, and preserving a financial future for themselves and their families.
Socioeconomic status is directly related to numerous components of our overall health. The ability to procure money that supports the individual’s desired quality of life is a crucial determinant of the individual’s mental stability and stress level, which in turn relates to the individual’s physiological health. Many problems arise if financial needs are not met and in most cases, this leads to a negative impact on cardiovascular and mental health. There is also the potential for individuals who are struggling financially over time to turn to substance abuse and further entrench themselves in the cycle of poor health outcomes.
In 2014, a consulting firm called the Financial Fitness Group found that roughly 80% of workers in the United States find themselves in some level of financial stress and economic burden. Much of this stress manifests itself in the form of debt, and workers are having to remove money from their retirement packages and future savings to remediate current debt struggles.
Employers want to avoid this possibility for their workforce and many companies are seeing the wellness benefits of proper financial management. Corporate wellness programs are now offering financial management classes, seminars, and other educational initiatives that protect employees from ending up in a compensating financial situation. It is important to keep in mind that exercise and diet improvements are not the only contributions to wellness as financial stressors in Americans’ professional lives can require wellness efforts as well.