January is a time when people may find they struggle more from a financial perspective than they do during the rest of the year. December is a time of great expense for many of us.
But this year things may be even more difficult for people. As an employer it’s important that you keep lines of communication open between your employees and managers, and make sure everyone knows that you’re available to speak to if they’re facing any issues they want to discuss.
Giving your people more control over when they do their job, and from where, can be the key to offering a better work/life balance for many people. It can also help people reduce their outgoings by saving on travel to and from the office, not relying on childminders or after-school clubs, and even simply ditching that morning trip to the coffee shop.
If you really want to attract and retain the right people in your business, offering flexibility is one of the best things you can do. Especially in the tricky times we’re facing right now.
And here are some more important things you can do to help support your people during tough times.
1) Offering an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP).
This gives your employees access to help and support via a helpline or online when it suits them and can cover a range of issues, including financial worries and debt. This doesn’t have to cost the business a lot -you’ll find companies who offer this to all employees for a fixed cost to you. Some EAPs offer webinars and group chats which may help employees to pick up ideas.
2) Consider reimbursing employees for the cost of certain services if they provide receipts.
This can cover costs such as memberships or subscriptions, gym memberships or even breakfast or lunch when in the office.
3) Educating yourself and your managers on how to offer the best support.
There are lots of courses that will help you to offer your people support and advice when they’re struggling with financial issues. Sometimes speaking to someone with some of the answers can make a huge difference. Signposting employees to organisations like the Money and Pension Service is a great idea.
Don’t underestimate the impact financial worries can have on people. In serious cases it can lead to huge mental health issues, so it’s important that you take it seriously if one of your people approaches you for help or advice. Always do your best to help or refer your employee to the right support as quickly as possible.
If you are looking for guidance on offering financial wellbeing support or a review of your employee benefits, we’d be happy to help. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0131 364 4186.
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