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2016 Should See More Financial Well-being Programs Added by U.S. Employers

Aon Hewitt survey

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250 U.S. employers, representing nearly 7 million workers, recently took part in the “2016 Hot Topics in Retirement and Financial Well-Being” survey conducted in late 2015 by Aon Hewitt that revealed plans by large employers to expand their current financial well-being programs for their employees in 2016.

The survey indicated that 55 percent of employers currently offer some sort of help for workers in the areas of budgeting, money management and the financial aspects of healthcare. In 2016, 77 percent of employers plan to have at least one financial well-being program, and 52 percent will have at least three.

This comes after recovery from the shock of the Great Recession of 2008-2012, when employers were focused on increasing their employees’ perceptions of their defined contribution (DC) plan’s value, especially when pre-existing defined benefits (DB) plans were no longer offered. This gave way to mitigating risk and reassessing the appropriateness of their retirement plans once the recession was no longer an issue.

Employers are now shifting to exploring ways in which they can help their employees gain some solid financial ground, such as offering different tools and services to help employees improve their financial well-being as well as navigate the retirement process as they approach retirement age.

Of particular significance is the fact that employers want to do this because it is “the right thing to do”, especially after the recession, when the U.S. was shedding jobs at an alarming rate. Employers now respond positively to employees’ requests for resources to help them obtain a more secure financial future, and this ultimately builds goodwill. Aon Hewitt expects that 2016 will be the year that sees financial well-being programs become part of most employers’ total rewards packages.

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