A new survey has shown that with one in three employees just getting by financially, as many as 50% say their current financial situation is affecting their mental health.
Aviva’s fourth edition of its Age of Ambiguity study, which has been tracking employees’ experience of work since before the pandemic, shows just how socio-economic uncertainty and financial pressures are impacting people’s well-being.
According to the data, feelings of financial distress were widespread even before the economic and political upheaval that heightened during the Autumn.
Those earning up to £24,000 per year are the most likely (60%) to feel their finances are negatively impacting their mental health.
Aviva’s report considers the role employers can play in helping employees with their personal finances and financial well-being while recognising that anxiety from economic concerns is complex and individual.
It suggests that open conversation around money, and signposting support that is available, will help to make sure a range of people across different incomes, ages, genders and other groups are catered to.
Dr Doug Wright, Medical Director at Aviva UK Health, commented,“The relationship between debt and mental health is long established, but in these challenging times, employers need to be closely attuned to their employees’ financial wellbeing, signposting help for those who need it but are unsure of where to find it.
“Being financially responsible does not necessarily guarantee stability – even for people who are experienced with budgeting, the current cost of living crisis is presenting new challenges to their personal finances. Employers should look to offer support that bolsters employees’ confidence, as well as offering practical solutions that appeal to their full breadth of employees.
“Workplace education campaigns about personal finances, including credit ratings and budgeting, can be a great way of helping people feel more secure with their monthly pay cheques. Aviva’s learning portal provides seminars on a range of financial topics. Tools that foster an open environment where those in debt know that they can raise their concerns with their line manager, or access services like debt counselling through the business, are equally important.”
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