More than half of UK adults (51%) say that the pandemic has made them more conscious of the need to save more, with over a quarter (26%) saying it has made them recognise that they do not have enough savings, according to a new survey of working adults by WEALTH at work.
Just over a fifth (22%) say it made them realise they need to improve their understanding of how best to save money and 14% say it made them think they need to save more into their pension.
Conversely, only 18% say it has not changed their view on savings.
Despite these findings, more than two out of five (41%) employers don’t offer any support to help their employees understand their finances. For those who are supported by their employers, nearly a quarter (23%) say they put on financial education seminars or webinars, a fifth (20%) say they provide financial guidance on a one-to-one basis, and nearly a fifth (18%) say their employer organises for staff to speak to a regulated financial adviser.
Jonathan Watts-Lay, Director, WEALTH at work, provider of financial education and guidance in the workplace, comments; “The pandemic forced many people to stop and think about their finances, and the majority realised that they needed to save more. Unfortunately, reduced work or redundancy has meant that many have faced a fall in their overall household income. Without having sufficient savings to fall back on, many may have struggled to make ends meet.”
He explains; “The research has shown us that people do want to learn how to save more money, and some realise that they need to save more into their pension. Financial education and guidance delivered in the workplace can help employees understand how to make the most of the various saving vehicles available depending on their individual saving needs; whether that be to purchase a car, house, for retirement or even to cover unexpected eventualities such as being made redundant.
It can help employees realise how they could free up more money for their savings by shopping around for car insurance suppliers rather than auto-renewing, or by utilising discount vouchers. Financial education can also help with other important financial skills such as how to best manage debt, understanding the importance of having an emergency fund set aside for unplanned life events, as well as having sufficient savings for retirement.”
Watts-Lay adds; “These uncertain times have highlighted the need to support employees to become more financially resilient so that they are better able to manage any financial shocks. As part of an overall wellbeing strategy, many companies are seeing the benefit of sourcing specialist financial wellbeing providers to help with this.”
*The research of 1,015 UK adults in employment, was carried out by Vital Research between 20th May and 4th June. The results are available here.