April is National Financial Literacy Month. Finances can still be taboo in America, but there is an opportunity for education in the workplace, where income and benefits are most relevant. Financial literacy is for everyone, from investing wizards to those who never seem to get around to making a budget. Here are four essential topics to raise with employees in the office:
1. Benefits Overview
In reviewing financial literacy, highlight employee benefits. Health care, 401(k) plans, remote work stipends, wellness benefits, and more. Part of financial literacy is understanding everything that is available to you, and oftentimes employees underutilize benefits. Having guides to each benefit is important for employees to have a clear picture of what is offered.
Everyone needs a budget! Learning how to allocate take-home pay and manage expenses can be an art. With all the tools available, there is no need to fly solo. Create a master resource doc for employees with links to apps, services, books, and articles for every budgeting need.
According to Education Data, over 43 million US adults have student loan debt. As more jobs require undergraduate degrees and beyond, more Americans are dealing with student loans. Combined with other debts, these can take a massive toll on employees. Debt can seem unmanageable. Bring in experts to offer workshops and provide resources for loan information.
4. Get Down to Business
Working on financial literacy gives employees better business acumen. They will have the tools to understand the impact of actions and make more informed decisions. As a company, offer to subsidize or reimburse for classes outside of the workplace. Showing that you care about investing in their future is a hallmark of a great employer.
Providing opportunities for increasing financial literacy amongst employees is good for business. Those with a solid understanding and handle on their finances are less stressed, more productive, and are not as likely to look for other positions or need to pick up side hustles. Financial literacy frequently falls to the wayside in American education- but it is never too late! There is always something more to learn. Encourage everyone to set one financial goal, and check in at the beginning of the next month. Starting small with finances, whatever your goal is, can lead to big changes!