Employers need to talk about uncertainty with staff: BITC responds to ONS personal and financial wellbeing statistics

Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures released this morning show that there has been an increase in anxiety levels compared with the same quarter last year and increased concerns around employment for the future1.

Nicola Inge, employment and skills campaign director at Business in the Community (BITC), said: “The UK economy is arguably at its most crucial juncture for a decade and it’s no surprise today’s figures show people feel less secure about their jobs and the broader economic picture.

“Financial wellbeing and mental health are inextricably linked, and not enough employers support employees experiencing financial difficulties.

“Employers should ensure they’re offering a fair wage and employee benefits, break down the cultural barriers to talking about financial wellbeing at work and support employees with financial literacy, signposting to professional support where necessary.

“Our Mental Health at Work report, carried out in partnership with Mercer Marsh Benefits, revealed that just 36 per cent of employees felt able to talk to their manager about financial issues.

“Staff anxiety levels are likely to increase as uncertainty continues over the coming months and businesses have a key role to play in their employees’ wellbeing, not just economic but personal. It’s crucial that businesses of all sizes communicate with their staff clearly and openly in the months ahead.”

BITC has produced a toolkit, Ensuring Everyone Benefits: Improving financial wellbeing through employee benefits that work for everyone, to help employers have discussions with their employees about financial wellbeing and offer benefits that are fit for everybody.

ENDS

Media contact
Cathy Beveridge, media and external affairs manager, Business in the Community, 07776 181945, Email: cathy.beveridge@bitc.org.uk 

About Business in the Community
Business in the community is the oldest and largest business-led membership organisation dedicated to responsible business. We were created nearly 40 years ago by HRH The Prince of Wales to champion responsible business.  

We inspire, engage and challenge members and we mobilise that collective strength as a force for good in society to:  

References
1. Office for National Statistics (2019); Personal and economic well-being in the UK: November 2019; available at https://www.ons.gov.uk