There’s an enormous push in the HR market to use technology to help employees save more for rainy days and retirement. The drive towards financial wellness is awesome. You need finances first, though.

In 2016, cash matters.

Workers aren’t stupid. At the first sign of trouble in the economy, companies will buckle down and focus on revenue and margins instead of retaining key employees. If they don’t cash in on the war for talent right now, they never will. If you want your workforce to contribute more towards retirement and savings accounts, you have to pay them more. Those stagnant old wages won’t do.

Create a financial wellness program because it matters, not because you’re chintzy.

Nothing worse than being encouraged to save more for retirement and then receiving a bogus match from your employer. It also sucks when companies talk about wellness but don’t contribute more towards healthcare costs. Yes, okay, we hear you. Obama ruined everything. But here’s the deal: employees have been overcharged for years, and nobody gave a shit. And Millennials are not going back to the old days of being screwed by a gap in coverage or not having access to birth control. So you want your workforce to save more for retirement and contribute more towards healthcare? Organizations better contribute more, too.

We’re in this together.

I would love to meet a CFO who stops viewing labor as a cost that will one day be mitigated by monkey-robots. (Believe me, those CFOs are chomping at the bit to replace you with a machine or an algorithm.) Until that happens, my message to executive leaders is simple: stop being so adversarial. Until those monkey-robots do your bidding, you’re stuck with a workforce that is your partner towards profitability. You cannot hoard wealth at the top and then tell your workforce to “pack a lunch” and budget to save for retirement.

Financial wellness programs are coming, and it’s a huge business. But let’s try to do something different, for once. Instead of implementing another ineffective program that fails, let’s think about the cause of our problems and work out the glitches before we foist this on our workforce.

In fact, working out the glitches of any program is HR’s number one job.

1 Comment

  1. hahaha Yup this is true – show me the money. I have always believed that money begets money – so it is imperative to reach the first step in that very tall ladder. We have managed to get there. Now to maximize 😉

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