Research from Hastee Pay has found that 25% of UK workers have suffered from a lack of concentration at work due to worry over their personal finances showing productivity could be improved if workers had more control over their earned pay.
Of 1,000 workers surveyed, 25% say they have suffered from a lack of concentration at work while thinking about managing their finances and 19% believe this has diminished their performance. The research reveals that financial stress has impacted 21% of people in average level roles, yet this rises to 30% for people in higher paid roles, indicating that financial stress is not limited to those with lower incomes.
More than a fifth (21%) of workers admit to managing debt repayments during working hours while just under a third (32%) have missed work because they have not had enough available funds to pay for their travel costs to work.
The survey also highlights a growing disconnect between traditional pay cycles and the ability for UK workers to live comfortably within their means. 78% of workers rely on finance options to source money quickly between pay days. Since the demise of the payday loan company Wonga people have been looking at alternative ways to source funds to help ease the burden.
“In the age of portfolio careers, employers should note that 44% of respondents are interested in being handed control of their own pay and 45% are more likely to stay with an employer that can provide flexible payment. It’s clear that traditional pay cycles don’t fit with modern financial demands; flexible payment is the key to motivating and retaining a happy, productive and engaged workforce,” says James Herbert, CEO of Hastee Pay.
When it comes to employers offering financial support, only 12% offer face-to-face financial advice and 16% offer financial wellbeing programmes. These findings suggest that employers lack awareness of the financial challenges of their employees as well as the associated impact on business productivity.
“Employers must begin to acknowledge and understand the silent strain that financial stress is having on their workforce,” Herbert concludes. “As part of the growing trend of businesses demonstrating Corporate Social Responsibility, employers should consider a financial wellbeing strategy that offers guidance which also empowers workers to reach out and ask for help, both confidently and discreetly.”