A recent survey from the National Endowment for Financial Education reported that 88% of Americans say that the COVID-19 crisis is causing stress on their personal finances.

Employees want to work for companies that care not only about providing for future needs, like retirement and potential medical emergencies, but that help them address their immediate challenges.  Even before COVID, money was the dominant cause of stress for American workers, with more employees identifying financial stress as their largest source of worry than all other responses combined.

Jeff Gies, Vice President at ADP said companies must understand “that every employee, no matter what position they have with the organization, has a level of worry about their finances.”  Whether some one is struggling to put food on the table or about to take early retirement, Americans’ lack of financial literacy, preparedness, and bandwidth to deal with the constant barrage of financial responsibilities adds-up to inefficiency and stress.

Now add-in a global pandemic.  Even those who have stable jobs are more concerned about money and what might be coming around the corner next.  Gies says that firms must ask themselves, “How can I put in flexible strategies that can help any individual despite their income level [or] age … to alleviate the stress? How can I help them reduce their debt? How can I help them save more? How can I help them keep more of their paycheck on a week-to-week, month-to-month basis?”

Companies are strapped too.  And more income actually does not solve the problem—the top 10% of earners outspend their paychecks at the same rate as the national average.  It really comes down to providing assistance that will help employees convert their income into financial progress by providing tools that make it simpler and faster to do so.