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Employee money worries damaging the bottom line

Money worries among employees are directly affecting productivity and the bottom line, according to a new report from Barclays. On top of that, a communication 'disconnect' has left most employers unaware that there's a problem, it said.

Nearly half of the 2,000 employees surveyed said that they worried about their finances, and nearly one in five said that they lost sleep because of it.

A fifth said that their financial situation affects their work. Company bottom line declined by 4 per cent because of employees' money worries, the report said.

Financial concerns were found to trigger illness - and accounted for an average 4.2 days of absence a year for 5 per cent of employees.

Employers unaware

When 100 employers were also canvassed for their opinions, a stark 'disconnect' was found between them and their staff.

On several measures, including size of benefits package, communication surrounding benefits package, company concern over financial wellbeing, and acceptability of managing finances at work, employers had a far rosier picture about the contentment of their workforce than was the case.

For example, 72 per cent of employers thought they provided a good benefits package compared to 23 per cent of employees.

Fewer than one in ten employees thought their company cared about their financial wellbeing, compared to 7 in 10 employers who thought their employees felt positive about the same.

The solutions, according to the report, included better reward packages, better communication, increased spending power, and more assistance to struggling employees.

Acas publications and services

Acas experts can visit your organisation and review the effectiveness of your pay system, and devise new incentive and benefits schemes. See Pay and reward: how Acas can help for further information.

Practical training, such as those listed under Skills for supervisors and Staff retention, can help your managers connect better with staff, improve communication and engagement, and generally aid employment relations. Courses on Stress can also help your workforce become more resilient.

For free, impartial advice and guidance visit Acas Helpline Online.

Visit the Acas Training Courses, Workshops and Projects area for more information.

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