2020 Financial Wellness Outlook: Guidance and Bite-Sized Wellness

With every new year, employers take a look at their financial benefits offerings. As 2020 gets started, financial wellness programs are continuing to shift. They’re no longer only offering education-based financial wellness.

Instead, financial wellness programs are adding coaching and guidance to their platforms. To make real change, employees need guidance.

Simply discovering their financial needs isn’t enough.

Education can inform employees of the weak spots in their budget or financial plan. But without a tangible plan, employees falter.

What Does Guidance Look Like?

Guidance should include actionable steps for employees to take. If they’re having a child soon, a checklist of how to change their insurance coverage would be helpful.

HR advisors can use financial wellness programs to include benefits recommendations and breakdowns.

This can also include recommendations of savings accounts to start budgeting. Or student loan debt calculators to help figure out how much to pay off each month.

Actionable Steps

Another big trend to watch out for in 2020 is more micro-sized benefits guidance.

Rather than employees giving employees a goal of creating an emergency fund, employers should instead create micro goals. What changes can employees enact today to get them closer to that goal?

In some cases, that’s opening a savings account and setting up a small automatic deposit. For others, it may be canceling an old gym membership to have some extra cash each month.

By focusing more on micro goals, not big picture ones, employees can better see their progress.

Using checklists and smaller goals in service of a larger one can make progress seem doable. This leads to confidence and real financial change long-term.

Healthcare Stress

Finally, many employers already offer financial tools and solutions. But employees aren’t taking full advantage of them.

Among financial stress, healthcare costs are among the most reported for employees. Healthcare expenses can be mitigated with a Health Savings Account though.

Unfortunately, HSAs are among the most misunderstood benefits.

Strong financial wellness can show employees how an HSA works, how to enroll, and how it can affect their own costs.

Targeted, actionable guidance is what employees need in 2020. One-size-fits-all programs are no longer the norm. Technology makes it easy to target employees with specific financial problems. Then, employers can create action plans to move employees forward.

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