Benefit from having financially fit employees

Your employees’ financial problems are costing you money

Personal finance problems can increase an individual’s stress levels, cause emotional problems that can affect productivity, increase absenteeism and lower morale, and create health problems. What does this mean for you as an employer? We all know from experience—when people are stressed they can’t focus as keenly on the work they need to do, and in the end your employees’ financial issues are costing you money.

South Africa finds itself amidst what many have identified as an economic crisis with the Rand at an all-time low and consumer confidence continuing to weaken. In October 2015, FNB announced that consumer confidence had dropped and is now on par with the lowest recording during the 2008/9 recession.

Furthermore, a recent World Bank survey indicated that South Africans are the most over-indebted borrowers in the world, with 21c of every rand earned going to debt. With consumer debt in a state of crisis in the country, it is highly likely that your individual employees would be feeling the strain as well.

The recent festive season did little to alleviate this rising tide of debt, and many consumers, namely some of your employees, may have now reached a situation where they are borrowing money simply to make ends meet. With the new school year upon us, people will have to dig deep into their pockets once again. The fact is that while people may be struggling to manage their debts and get their heads above water, they fail to practise good money management.

This is not a good way to start a new year, and many South Africans will spiral into an uncontrollable debt spiral that will lead to feelings of helplessness and depression.

Studies have shown that:

  • Over 50% of people do not have a budget at all
  • South Africans simply do not save – or they don’t know how to
  • People continue to overspend even though they cannot afford it
  • Despite recent attempts by the government to assist over-indebted consumers, they continue to mismanage their debt

It’s time to do something about it.

While many companies focus on skills training, they forget about employee wellness programmes that will benefit the company just as much. What is a wellness programme? Workplace wellness is any programme that aims to improve the health of your employees and their families while lowering your health-related costs as an employer.

These wellness programmes can include nutrition and health initiatives, substance abuse platforms, and lifestyle and educational interventions. One of these interventions would target employee financial wellness.

The truth is that financially healthy employees are more productive employees.

The benefits of financially healthy employees include:

  • Staff would be less likely to get involved in fraudulent activities, which means less risk for your business
  • Reduce expenses spent on sick leave, managing garnishee orders, and replacing staff members
  • Get a bigger return on investment and increase employee productivity by reducing employee stress levels, as well as decreased absenteeism
  • Facilitate greater employee satisfaction levels, as the company invests in wellness programmes that will contribute to a more enjoyable work environment
  • Let your employees acquire skills that will enable them to get more out of the money they earn
  • Improve your bottom line and make a difference in your employees’ lives

The truth is, while it may cost you money to provide these services to employees, for many companies wellness programmes actually save money in the long run.

For more information, contact us at 021 888 6000 or send an email to