The Business Case for Providing Financial



Every year organizations spend 50% - 65% of their operating budgets on wages and benefits they offer their employees   These benefits can be 30-40% of their total compensation.    Many organizations have viewed financial wellness as a compliance lens of education around a 401k or 403b retirement plan.    While this is essential and needed, there are more potential educational opportunities to promote financial wellness with their employees.


The goal of the Governor’s Financial Literacy Council subcommittee on Workplace Financial Literacy is to help educate employers on the need to provide resources and education on all aspects of Financial Literacy to their employees.   The following statistics help us to understand why this work is so important:









The Facts


¨ The average household owes $7,120 on their credit cards. (2013 Federal Reserve Report)


¨ Looking at only indebted households (16% or more of their net income) the average outstanding balance on credit cards rises to $15,263. (Federal Reserve Report)


¨ Student loan debt now exceeds $1 Trillion (2013 College Board Report)


¨ The average student loan debt is $31,646.(Federal Reserve Report)


¨ The estimated cost of raising a child from birth to 18 years old has soared to $241,080. (2012 U.S. Department of Agriculture Study)

¨ Tuition and fees alone rose 4.8% to an average of $8,655 (College Board Report)


¨ In 2012 health care costs increased 3.7%, transportation costs rose 2.6% and housing costs increased 2.2%. (Federal Reserve Report)


¨ Americans with health care coverage experienced a 7.2 percent increase in their share of health care costs between 2011 and 2012. (Center for Disease Control Report)


¨ By July 2009 personal savings rates dropped to 4.2% from a high of 10% in the early 1980’s.  (“Weighing the Effects of Financial Education in Workplace”).


¨ Retirement – Most Americans are ill-prepared for retirement, while at the same time, the degree to which Social Security can fund retirement is becoming increasingly lower for future generations.  It is also likely that younger workers who switch roles are more likely to cash out their balances in their 401k or 403b upon leaving one organization for another.   (“Weighing the Effects of Financial Education in Workplace” – Hewitt Study)




Money (71 percent), work (69 percent) and the economy

(59 percent) continue to be the most

commonly reported sources of stress.

—American Psychological Assn



Financial stress is having an impact on the workplace,

potentially draining productivity and

increasing emotional stress on the job.” 

USA Today



Financial stress is the leading cause of



Psychological Assn 

Stress in America 2014 Survey



“Employees with  money problems are like sharks

swimming around the workplace taking bites out of the

bottom line.”

—Dr. E Thomas  Garman, Personal Finance Employee Education Foundation 2009








If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and

become more, you are a leader.”

- John Quincy Adams, 6th President of the United States

Financial Education in the Workplace

Governor’s Council on Financial Literacy

Workplace Financial Literacy Workgroup

WI Department of Financial Institutions

Office of Financial Literacy

201 W. Washington Ave., Ste. 300 (53703)

PO Box 7847

Madison WI 53707-7847

(608) 261-9540

Text Box: Featured Article

“Financial Literacy Programs in the Workplace:  Good for Employees and the Bottom Line”

Reprinted with permission from New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants, Copyright 2014, as published in the NYSSCPA CPA Journal, September, 2014, all rights reserved by NYSSCPA.