Financial wellness – a genuine staff benefit

With 28,000 medium-sized businesses in Australia and new remuneration structures offered by super providers, many advisers are taking a second look at workplace super as an opportunity to grow their business.There are three key opportunities for advisers to benefit from building workplace super advice into their services.

Scale to grow your client base – whether you specialise in general advice, insurance, mortgage broking or something else altogether, being attached to a workplace super plan lets you become the natural point of contact for members, beyond their super needs.

A new revenue stream – most new remuneration models provide a flat fee per member model. So for every company you provide workplace super advice for, the more you receive. What’s more, as those companies grow, so do revenue and referral opportunities.

Retention of your business clients – as you’re providing financial advice services to your employer clients, expanding that service to their staff will strengthen the relationship.

While these are opportunities for advisers, there is also a need for employees. More and more employers recognise the impact personal financial stress has on workplace productivity and, according to one study, 68 per cent of employers believe in helping staff make better financial decisions1.

This is an issue we look at in our latest booklet – A better choice for employee well-being. Written for employers, this booklet shows the importance of making ‘financial wellness’ a priority for staff - and the statistics are revealing:

  • 28 per cent of employees surveyed say personal financial issues have been a distraction at work. Nearly half of those spend three or more hours a week thinking about or dealing with their personal financial issues.
  • Highly engaged employees in your business can be expected to deliver around twice the annual net income, compared to employees who are less engaged.
  • 60 per cent of employees say feeling valued makes them happy in their work, with happy employees around one third more productive and creative than unhappy ones.

The genuine staff benefit that financial wellness offers reinforces the value of the advice you can provide.

As the designated financial adviser through an employer’s (your client’s) super plan, you are opening the door to potentially more clients. This may be through the provision of simple intra-fund advice (personal advice without doing a full know-your-client) which is generally limited in scope and restricted to advice on superannuation.

The provision of advice – either intra-fund or comprehensive – through super has influential supporters. In 2016, The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) used a submission to the Productivity Commission to highlight advice as being a benefit beyond positive investment returns.

"The increasing number of fund members approaching retirement age, with growing levels of assets and improvements in life expectancy, means access to superannuation advice is ever more important," ASFA said.

While ASFA said scaled, intra-fund advice would suit the needs of the majority of members, it also recognised the importance of comprehensive advice.

Quality advice attached to a workplace super plan gives members the best possible opportunity to achieve their retirement goals – something that is now recognised as a genuine staff benefit. Next time you’re talking to your business clients, ask them about the financial wellness of their staff. It may just open the doors to new advice opportunities.

Download our workplace super booklets:  A world of opportunities and A better choice for employee well-being – or contact an IOOF workplace solutions manager.


1 Australia Employee Benefit Trends Study (MetLife 2016)

The information contained in this newsletter is provided on behalf of the IOOF group of companies and is intended for financial adviser use only. It is given in good faith and has been prepared based on information that is believed to be accurate and reliable at the time of publication. Any examples are for illustration purposes only and are based on the continuance of present laws and our interpretation of them at the time.