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Why you should consider financial wellbeing benefits during open enrollment season

An exciting and busy time of year for businesses is open enrollment season for employers and employees. Employers are shopping for new benefits and deciding which ones are worth the investment. Employees are choosing or switching benefit options like health, dental, and life insurance, as well as an assortment of voluntary and ancillary benefits, such as legal services or pet insurance. However, most employees lack the tools and knowledge to make fully informed choices—even when HR does their best to resource their employee population.

One way to make the most impact across your entire benefits offering is to make sure that your employees have the tools, education, and support to be financially knowledgeable and stable. A financial wellness program as a benefit can make a significant difference in the financial lives of your employees. 

No matter where your employees are in their careers, it’s likely they are (or will soon be!) under some sort of financial stress. According to the 2022-2023 Aflac workplace benefits report, employees need help: 

  • 1 in 3 employees has delayed necessary healthcare in the past year due to high costs. This endangers staff health.
  • Over half of employees cannot afford an unexpected $1,000 expense, yet 78% of employers believe their staff can meet financial obligations. This massive perception gap sets employers up to offer inadequate benefits. 
  • Less than half of employees (43%) are confident they understand their insurance policies. This lack of comprehension results in sub-optimal benefits and health plan choices.

Clearly, employees are stressed financially and need assistance:

  • Evaluating benefit selections wisely
  • Determining affordable options 
  • Comprehending key terminology and policies

This is where financial wellness programs like Your Money Line excel. We provide:

  1. Guidance: Experts explain complex benefit choices so employees pick optimal plans.
  1. Resources: Calculators and tools help employees estimate costs and coverage needs. 
  1. Education: Employees gain financial literacy. 

During open enrollment season, we can specifically help your employees understand the following: 

  • Understanding the difference between high-deductible health plans (HDHP) and other healthcare plans 

Navigating questions about Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) 

  • Who can contribute to an HSA? 
  • How much can I contribute?
  • What can I use the funds for? 
  • The difference between flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and HSAs 

Retirement Questions

  • Am I contributing enough to my employer-sponsored plan? 
  • What is/are the difference(s) in the plan(s) offered by my employer? 

Understanding disability insurance 

  • How much disability insurance is enough? 
  • Understanding the different types of policies 
  • The difference between own occupation and any occupation 

Life Insurance

  • How much is enough? 
  • What type of policy do I need?
    Do I need coverage beyond what my employer offers? 

Understanding the full offerings of a company’s benefits plan

  • Which choice is best for my unique situation?
  • Understanding little-known or more complex benefits options
  • Handing benefits questions that might typically end up in HR’s inbox

Arming employees with knowledge empowers them to tailor selections to their financial situation during open enrollment. This pays dividends for employers as well. Financially secure employees have:

‍ Less absenteeism: They can afford medical care and avoid preventable issues.

‍ Higher productivity: They're not distracted worrying about money problems.

‍ Increased loyalty: They feel valued by employer-provided financial wellness assistance.

‍ Enhanced recruitment: Comprehensive benefits, including financial wellness programs, give a competitive edge.

‍Reduced healthcare costs: Employees make informed choices resulting in fewer unnecessary expenses.

In essence, financial wellness programs demonstrate that you, as an employee, have a commitment to caring for the whole employee: physical, mental, AND financial health. Plus, having a team of trained financial experts keeps at least some of the open enrollment workload off your HR team and on a team of certified experts who can provide personalized guidance to each employee.

Financial wellness programs provide a holistic solution that benefits both employees and organizations. Employees gain peace of mind knowing they are making informed choices to protect their health and finances. Meanwhile, employers enjoy reduced absenteeism, higher engagement, loyalty, productivity, and recruitment capabilities. Most importantly, integrating financial wellness into benefits packages shows an employer genuinely cares about supporting the whole person. 

This open enrollment season, take the opportunity to invest in your greatest asset: your people. Empower them with knowledge and resources to choose the right benefits for their situation—and give them a financial coach who can be there with them every step of the way. The returns for your organization will be immense. Uplifted employees become high performers who, in turn, power your business’s long-term success.