Helping employees save for retirement and build wealth can improve job satisfaction and reduce stress and turnover. Several simple and low-cost options for offering retirement plans are available. In addition, other financial incentives can help employees increase their earning (and saving) potential, while aligning with the interests of the business. Options include offering profit-sharing, financial coaching, or a small-dollar lending program.

These resources can help you think about options in this area:


Idea 1: Offer all employees a retirement savings program. 

Why offer a program

Our Thriving Workforce guide gives an overview of why you should consider offering a retirement plan to your employees, questions to consider in offering a plan, and other ways to support employees in building their wealth.

These resources from Pacific Community Ventures provides the business case for offering a retirement plan, how to get started, and where to go for support.

Options for a program

This article on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Good Company website explores how small businesses can offer employees a 401(k) plan and where to go for support in setting up a plan.

This guide from the U.S. Dept. of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration and the Internal Revenue Service outlines the advantages of the most popular types of IRA-based and defined contribution plans and defines each of these options.


Idea 2: Provide access to emergency loans or small-dollar loans.

Why offer loans

Offering employees a small lending program can help them prevent or handle a small emergency without falling into crisis and to build credit as they repay the loan. As an employer, having employees who are less stressed about finances allows them to be present in their work and encouraged to stay with the organization longer-term. This article shares four reasons to offer a small lending program and this follow up article explains how Oakridge Neighborhood Services partnered with the Director’s Council and the Financial Empowerment Center to offer a small lending program.

Create a program

This sample policy from the Society of Human Resources Management can be a tool in drafting your own emergency loan program.

Income Advance offers a guide for employers to set up an emergency loan program that can foster financial wellness for employees and increase productivity and retention.


Idea 3: Offer financial coaching or financial wellness training. 

Explore options

This guide by Prosperity Now reviews what to consider when exploring workplace financial wellness services and what types of services you could offer, including:

  • Financial counseling and coaching services
  • Debt management services
  • Savings products and services
  • Short-term loans and accrued wage advances
  • Online financial management tools
  • Financial education classes and seminars

Create a program

This guide by the National Fund for Workforce Solutions offers six steps for creating a financial wellness program at your organization.


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Employer Guide

The Thriving Workforce Employer Guide offers six strategies for building a strong team at your organization.

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