New survey reveals HR are not confident to help staff with post-Christmas debt stress

As many return to work following a spent-up break today, the reality of paying back Christmas debts could hit home.

Despite this, new research from Neyber reveals that four in ten HR Managers do not feel equipped to support workers with money worries and almost half (49%) feel it’s not in their remit to do so.  Here’s how HR Managers feel about managing employees with financial worries:

The study, carried out among 10,000 UK employees and 500 employers found that 45% of HR people said that they believe employees don’t bring their financial concerns into the workplace.

Unfortunately, the same research reveals that this is not the case.  35% of employees say they have felt stressed, 26% have lost sleep, 20% have felt depressed, 10% struggle to focus at work and 6% have missed a day at work, specifically because of financial worries. Of these, 40% say the issue creates a negative impact on relationships at work.

Heidi Allan, head of employee wellbeing at Neyber, said,

“It will be no surprise to know that this time of year is particularly problematic. According to debt advice charity National Debtline1, 37% of employees put Christmas expenses on credit last year, so although this is not the employer’s issue, there is great scope to support staff with financial wellbeing and education so they can start 2019 in the best possible way. There has quite rightly been great concern in the HR market in the last year, so it is positive that so many are helping employees where they can.”

Neyber’s report showed that three in ten employers have a well-developed wellbeing strategy, encompassing personal finance, retirement planning and employee benefits, however a further 20% said they have no strategy at all, and while 17% of those are considering it, 12% have no plans to introduce one at all.

“It is a widely known fact that employees often struggle to manage finances, which can be a very lonely feeling. The research shows 7% don’t know who to turn to and 16% handle it on their own. Perhaps not surprisingly, just 3% would go to their HR team, or 5% to a manager, but it is possible for HR and employers to create a supportive environment for staff without going to great expense themselves.”

Neyber’s full report can be found here.

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