As an HR or benefits professional, you understand the importance of supporting your workforce's financial wellbeing. It’s not only about helping them manage their finances, but also about improving their overall health and wellness. This has a positive impact on their productivity and engagement at work.
Although financial wellbeing programs offer proven ROI, building a business case for benefits budgets can sometimes present a challenge. That’s why we’re here to suggest some creative ways to fund your financial wellness program this year.
401(k) Matching Funds
Matching your employee's retirement contributions is a great way to support your team's financial goals, but what happens when an employee leaves the company before fully claiming their matching funds? These unclaimed funds can be used to pay for financial wellbeing programs for your current employees. It’s a win-win situation where you can put that money to good use and your employees can benefit from financial education and support.
Another way to leverage matching funds is by adopting a rollover program. This program allows your employees to transfer their 401(k) funds from their previous employer’s plan to your plan. By doing this, you can take advantage of the matching funds left behind in their previous plan, which can then be used to fund your financial wellness program.
If your plan doesn’t already allow for the use of unclaimed matching funds, you may be able to negotiate a plan amendment to include this provision. This will allow you to use these funds for financial wellness initiatives, and it’s worth discussing with your plan administrator to see if this is a possibility.
In addition to 401k matching funds, there are other ways to find funds for your financial wellbeing program. For example, you may have an ERISA budget account associated with your retirement and financial services offerings. This account is a separate account that retirement providers have that allows them to pay for continued wellness programs for participants. Talk to your plan adviser to find out if you have an ERISA budget available and what services can be paid for with it.
Health and Wellbeing Funds
Your health insurance service provider may also have funds available for additional wellness programs. If financial stress is affecting your employees’ mental wellbeing and productivity at work, you may be able to use these funds to introduce financial wellness initiatives to mitigate this stress.
Employee Education Budgets
Lastly, your organization may have an education budget available to use for financial wellness programs. Your Learning & Development team may administer these funds to offer continued learning and betterment programs to employees. Consider tapping into this budget to provide financial education and support for your employees.
In conclusion, financial wellbeing programs are essential for your employees’ wellbeing and productivity at work. There are creative ways to leverage unclaimed matching funds, ERISA budgets, health and wellness budgets, and education budgets to support these types of programs. Talk to your plan advisers and explore all available options to fund your financial wellbeing program and support your employees’ financial goals.