Recent years have seen unprecedented global challenges in the form of the COVID-19 pandemic, followed by a ‘great resignation’ and sharply rising prices, driven by global supply chain problems and the war in Ukraine. The cumulative impact has affected households across the world.

Behind the headlines of continuing falls in unemployment, there is a participation crisis in the UK, with over a million fewer people in the workforce than pre-pandemic, largely because of the higher economic inactivity of older workers and those with ill-health. This is contributing to low growth through labour and skills shortages, alongside vacancy numbers that are almost at a record high.

This economic climate has caused numerous risks to the financial wellbeing of the workforce (Figure 1). So, as the UK hovers on the brink of a recession predicted to be the worst in a generation, managing employee financial wellbeing is rapidly being pushed up the social, political and business agendas, as the potential for significant financial distress and the very real risks and growth of in-work poverty – which is already experienced by one in eight workers – means many more employees will almost certainly be struggling to cope.

While more employers are becoming aware and are recognising that financial wellbeing is more than just paying employees and providing a few benefits, it is still the least common area included in HR wellbeing strategies.

This guide provides practical advice to HR practitioners and employers of all sizes and sectors on how to take action to promote and support their employees’ financial wellbeing.

What is employee financial wellbeing (EFW)?

How can you develop an effective employee financial wellbeing policy?

The five key steps to developing a policy to help your employees

Case studies: Employee financial wellbeing initiatives in practice

To supplement this guidance, the CIPD is collating examples of excellent, practical employee financial wellbeing initiatives from different organisations to support your practice. Check back regularly to see the latest case studies.

Our grateful thanks to the participating organisations for sharing their experience and insight.

Case studies

Supporting employee financial wellbeing: Leek Building Society

Case study on how one organisation implemented a range of pay and benefits measures to support employee financial wellbeing

Case studies

Supporting employee financial wellbeing: A Singapore-based aerospace company

Case study on how a lunchtime seminar programme is helping employees plan for retirement

Case studies

Supporting employee financial wellbeing: West London NHS Trust

Case study on how an employee financial wellbeing survey resulted in free breakfasts

Case studies

Supporting employee financial wellbeing: SUEZ payroll autosaving

Case study on an award-winning savings initiative to help employees during cost-of-living crisis

Case studies

Supporting employee financial wellbeing: Tesco Stores

Case study on actions taken to help employees improve their financial literacy and decision-making

Resources, example questions and suggested actions

Acknowledgements

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