Dive Brief:

  • Money is a major pain point for 80% of workers, according to a report commissioned by Ceridian, a global human capital management (HCM) firm. The first Pay Experience Report found that North American workers regularly face financial issues that hit hard at work and home.
  • The poll of 1,891 full-time and part-time employees and contract workers found that only 30% are content with how transparent employers are about pay. About half of female respondents — versus 35% of male respondents — said not earning enough money is the top reason they’re unhappy with their employers. And while pay is important to respondents, 37% said they aren’t comfortable discussing pay with managers.
  • Despite public discussions about the rising cost of living and mounting debt, financial wellness isn’t a priority for employers, Ceridian said. About 30% of respondents said they must turn to credit cards to pay unexpected expenses, and 11% must borrow from relatives, further compounding their stress over money.

Dive Insight:

Money is one of the most sobering stressors for U.S. workers, as studies continue to show. A 2017 study from the Center for Financial Services Innovation found that 1 in 3 workers are distracted at work because of money problems. In 2019, little seems to have changed. College graduates are entering the workforce with massive student loan debt, and many say they want employers’ help in paying them down. Fewer workers are able to save enough for retirement, and women and other marginalized groups still face pay gaps.

“The demands and expectations of employees in today’s workforce are significantly different than two or three decades ago when most company leaders began their careers. It’s unacceptable that the gender-pay gap remains a persistent issue, with only 53 percent of women believing they are paid equal to their male counterparts,” said Lisa Sterling, Ceridian’s chief people and culture officer, in a press statement. “Solving this requires employers to prioritize transparency and lean into new technologies that will help them embrace an equal value approach to pay.”

Financial wellness might not be the “silver bullet” to solving workers’ money troubles, but it could be a start to help them get their finances on track, alleviate some anxiety and stay productive on the job. Ceridian added in its report that employers could do more to bring financial wellness to workers, including using technology to pay them instantly instead of every two weeks. Conducting pay audits to uncover any demographic pay gaps can also contribute to healthier pay practices — if employers are willing to correct any inequities they uncover.

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