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Financial Health

Improving Financial Health – Starting from the Inside Out

Allison Vielhaber
Oct 18, 2022

The increased interest employers are showing in prioritizing financial wellness plays an important role in improving the financial health of people across the U.S. Although this continued interest in improving financial health from within is promising, a recent Financial Health Network survey revealed the percentage of people who are considered financially healthy actually declined from 34% in 2021 to 31% in 2022 for the first time in five years.

Looking Within

This past year, Jack Henry™ recognized our role as a change agent in fighting to improve financial health. As a provider of technology and services, we identified an opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the world – starting with our employees. We reimagined our business framework, introduced financial health into our purpose and mission, and focused on offering quality financial wellness tips, tools, and resources to our associates.

 By first focusing our attention within, we've created an environment where financial health remains a top priority and tools and education are accessible to all associates. This shift has created a ripple effect, further inspiring us to use our solutions and network of providers to empower our clients with the tools they need to address their financial goals and those of their accountholders.

It Starts with Your Employees

We recently hosted the Financial Health Network at Jack Henry Connect last month, where their team facilitated three workshops and discussed the importance of offering quality financial health tips and resources – motivating the audience to really examine their financial health offerings and strategic planning priorities.

Insights from the Financial Health Network were clear: innovations in financial technology are driving the market toward a more comprehensive and inclusive approach to tackling the financial health crisis. In order to successfully guide your accountholders through their financial health journey, you must start from within your organization. Although counter-intuitive, the answer to addressing financial health for your accountholders may be addressing it from an inside-out mentality.

Your employees are the most powerful tools and resources your institution has when it comes to addressing any financial health related goal or question from your accountholders. Just as you invest in the physical and mental health of your employees, investing in their financial health is equally as important. By offering quality benefits, wellness programs, tracking tools, compensation, and other financial wellness tips and resources, you can equip your frontline workers with the knowledge and tools they need to further improve the financial health of not only themselves but your accountholders, too.

Doing the Right Thing

Furthermore, the Financial Health Network revealed the unsettling reality ­that financial concerns rank as the number one source of stress for employees (even historically “high earners”) – outranking "issues at work" and "personal health." Additionally, 78% of people say they often feel detached and distracted by the stress around their financial health at work.

Investing in the financial health of your workforce is a win-win for both you and your employees. Not only is it a smart thing to do – it's the right thing to do. When you advocate improving the financial health of your employees, it shows you value them and the contributions they make to your company’s success.

You have the unique opportunity to attract and retain top talent by delivering solutions that people need and care about. From there, you can launch a program for accountholders that they can trust has their best interest in mind and with the fortitude to make a lasting impact.

Whether you launch a financial health program, provide financial wellness tips and resources, or offer financial counseling services – there are countless opportunities to invest in the financial health of your accountholders. When you financially empower your accountholders, you're developing stronger and longer-lasting relationships, building trust, and creating a profound impact in their financial health journey.

Financial Health in Action

There are many dimensions to financial health, including savings, spending, debt repayment, investing, and financial planning. By providing your accountholders the financial wellness tips and resources they need to make confident, well-informed money-related decisions, you’re offering them the opportunity for financial security in both the short- and long-term.

More institutions are investing in the financial health of their accountholders than ever before – offering more than just financial literacy to actively address better borrowing, saving, and spending practices. In a special session at this year’s Jack Henry Connect conference, Susan Espinosa, Vice President of Member Experience at Skyla Federal Credit Union, highlighted one financial health strategy, in particular, that's helped Skyla Federal garner its reward in member loyalty.

Skyla Federal recently deployed personalized financial counseling services for members, equipping their workforce with the resources to become certified financial health counselors. Through this initiative, Skyla Federal is not only improving the financial health of its employees and members but further demonstrates its unique value beyond the products they offer through empathetic communication and active listening – both of which play a key role in their ability to support members in their exact moments of need. By building strategic relationships and offering specialized training, Skyla Federal is re-establishing trust with members and improving the financial health of their employees and accountholders at the same time.

It Starts at Home

This holistic strategy was the focus for many of the panelists and speakers at Jack Henry Connect, revealing an interesting trend. Investing in employee development and building a community of financially confident employees creates authentic opportunities for your accountholders to receive best-in-class service when they need it. This ultimately positions your accountholders to feel more secure in taking the next step toward improving their financial health.

 Learn More

To find more financial health resources, we encourage you to visit the Financial Health Network and begin exploring how you can help. We also invite you to join us October 16 – 19 in Indianapolis, IN for Jack Henry Connect 2023! To continue to stay on top of industry trends, upcoming events or to hear about our latest developments, connect with us at jackhenry.com


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