Financial wellness research and insights.
Designed to help employees achieve their financial goals.
Financial wellness research and insights.
Designed to help employees achieve their financial goals.
If the goal of your financial wellness program is to get employees to take action and achieve their financial goals, then it’s critical to have a financial coach that helps keep employees accountable and feeling confident about their finances.
By incorporating real people into a financial wellness program, you’re able to achieve a much greater impact. Any financial wellness service that does not directly incorporate a coach or advisor into the employee financial wellness program is missing out on what is potentially the biggest driver of behavior change, namely a financial expert to keep employees accountable to their goals.
Since, we recognize that accountability is a key missing ingredient in financial wellness programs, we also believe that when employees do not feel a sense of accountability towards their stated financial goals, they are significantly less likely to achieve them. People work with personal trainers to ensure they exercise regularly and make progress on their fitness goals. Similarly, employees need a financial coach to keep them on track, and ensure that they are making progress on their financial goals. As we all know too well, personal finances can be confusing and that confusion leads us to procrastinate. When an employee is matched with a financial coach, they have an “accountability partner” that helps to keep them engaged and provides them with actionable steps, while coaching them one step at a time.
Additionally, by designing a program that is finite and time-bound, it creates in employees a sense of urgency to complete the program. By setting up the first part of the financial wellness program as a “sprint” when the employee’s motivation is near its highest point, you’re able to get the most action from employees.
Moreover, we believe that the financial education model that nearly all financial wellness programs employ is an ineffective approach. Research has proven that financial education and literacy programs are completely ineffective in getting employees to take action. A meta-analysis of 188 financial literacy and education programs conducted in 2013 and published in “The Effect of Financial Literacy and Financial Education on Downstream Financial Behaviors” by Fernandes, Lynch and Netemeyer found the following:
“Content-based, financial education interventions explain only 0.1% of the variance in financial behaviors.”
In contrast, a World Bank study entitled “The ABCs of Financial Education : Experimental Evidence on Attitudes, Behavior, and Cognitive Biases” found that coaching was dramatically more effective than education.
Nearly all financial wellness providers tout content-based solutions, such as videos, articles and resources centers, when point-of-fact, this approach provides literally zero impact when it comes to behavior change.
At Retiremap, we believe in what behavioral research has shown to work: personalized coaching, multichannel messaging and just-in-time delivery.
That’s not to say that we don’t provide content to help keep employees engaged, because Retiremap does send employees personalized “I saw this article and thought of you…” messages. However, we do not rely on content to change employee behavior, because that flawed approach does not work.
InvestmentNews recently ran an article written by our partners at Duke University, on why education doesn’t doesn’t work and lasting ways to change employees’ unhealthy financial behaviors.
There’s a very real danger that financial wellness programs will flame out with employers. That’s because they are designed to educate, not change employee behavior.
Without metrics to show behavior change (e.g. open a new 401(k), HSA, emergency savings account + income flowing into those accounts), employers will sour on these programs. And it could happen before financial wellness gains real traction.
I just sat down to discuss these dangers and how advisors can counter the trend of low or no impact financial wellness programs. Check it out our recent video interview with Fred Barstein for 401kTV.
SAN FRANCISCO, September 8, 2016 — After an intensive 10 month product and research collaboration with Duke University’s Common Cents Lab, Retiremap is relaunching its financial wellness platform. The new vision for Retiremap 2.0 is based on a close collaboration with renowned behavioral economist, NY Times bestselling author, Wall Street Journal columnist and James B. Duke Professor of Behavioral Economics at Duke University, Dan Ariely.
To learn more about Retiremap 2.0 and the new research-backed platform, attend the launch webinar on Thursday, September 22nd at 11am Pacific:
“We usually think that the best cure for bad financial decisions is financial literacy. Just teach people, and all will be solved. Sadly this is not the case, and even worse, the evidence is that financial literacy’s effectiveness is close to zero.” said Professor Dan Ariely. “What we need is a system that takes the complexity of financial decision making, breaks it into actionable components, and coaches us on taking one step at a time. This is what Retiremap is designed to do.”
“Retiremap 2.0 is much more than a financial wellness program- it is a technology platform that works to improve financial well-being using key insights from the field of behavioral economics. We have created a personalized communications platform that coaches employees based on what research tells us works in real life,” said Matt Iverson, CEO at Retiremap. “Retiremap 2.0 uses employees’ data to deeply personalize their path to financial wellness, while automating and scaling many of the most impactful aspects of advisor-employee interactions, including confidence-building, trust and the perception of value. Additionally, in the situations where it makes sense, employees can easily connect live with their retirement plan advisor through any number of channels.”
Retiremap 2.0 will be made available to only a very limited group of retirement plan advisory firms. The selection process will be announced on the September 22nd webinar. In additional to exclusive access to Retiremap 2.0, selected firms will be able to demonstrate financial wellness thought leadership with exclusive access to some of Duke and Retiremap’s key research findings.
RETIREMAP 2.0’S NEW BENEFITS
The Retiremap 2.0 platform empowers employers and advisors to deliver:
Personalized, automated financial wellness coaching covering a range of needs, including getting out of debt and buying a home
An easy and efficient way for employees to connect live with their plan advisors
A research-backed model for behavior change
Dramatically increased scale and efficiency
Unique strategies to boost financial confidence and close the intention-action gap
Just-in-time messaging via email, SMS, online and in-app, as well as through channels such as Facebook and Twitter
Real-time, plan sponsor level analytics and reporting
“There are no financial wellness programs that come anywhere close to what we’ve built with Duke’s Common Cents Lab and Professor Ariely,” said Iverson. “The combination of Retiremap 2.0’s automated technology and sophisticated use of behavioral economics results in a program to close the employee intention-action gap. Advisory firms that are invested in improving employees’ financial lives and growing through access to a unique, research-backed financial wellness program should attend Retiremap 2.0’s launch webinar.”
Retiremap (RetiremapHQ.com) is a research-backed financial wellness platform designed with Duke University and renowned Professor Dan Ariely to help employees achieve their financial goals. Unlike existing financial wellness solutions, Retiremap’s personalized, automated coaching platform leverages the presence of the plan advisor to get employees to save more.
To create our new financial wellness platform, we partnered with Duke University’s Common Cents Lab and the renowned behavioral economist, NY Times bestselling author and WSJ columnist, Dan Ariely. It’s the skillful application of proven, research-based, behavioral economics principles that sets Retiremap 2.0 apart.
More education is not the answer. More Powerpoint presentations are not the answer. More one-off employee 1:1s are not the answer.
Personalized, affordable, long-term coaching is the answer (see our data sheet below for details).
So join us when we showcase Retiremap 2.0 alongside our partners from Duke on Thursday, 9/22 at 11am PDT. Space is limited to the first 250 people who register, so sign up today for the free launch webinar.
But the BIG problem with coaching is that it’s so labor intensive and expensive!
With Retiremap 2.0, we’ve designed a way to scale up financial wellness coaching using mobile technology, CRM automation, multi-channel messaging and the 3 Key Concepts Missing from Financial Wellness Programs. It’s very exciting and ground-breaking stuff.
You already know that there’s a ton of buzz around financial wellness.
But what you might not know is that there are three key concepts that are completely missing from financial wellness programs. By not including these key behavioral economics concepts, advisors, providers and employers are losing out on their opportunity to have a big impact.
Retiremap’s partnership with Duke University’s Common Cents Lab uncovered three missing key concepts
Don’t just take my word for it. These key concepts are the result of 10 months of product development between Retiremap and Duke University’s Common Cents Labs, headed by the renowned behavioral economist, NY Times bestselling author and WSJ columnist, Dan Ariely.
I want to talk briefly about three missing concepts and how they’ll shape the future of financial wellness. They’re not what you expect.
MISSING CONCEPT #1: Start with goal-setting
If we focus on explaining more of the fundamentals of personal finance, will employees change their under-saving behavior? No way. People care about themselves, their goals, their future. Start every engagement with a detailed discussion about which financial goals they want to accomplish, in order to motivate behavior change.
MISSING CONCEPT #2: Focus on pre-commitment
How can we ever get employees to change their behavior if we don’t ask for a specific commitment? We need to engage them around their goals and then get them to commit (multiple times, in different ways) to follow through. The use of positive social proof (i.e. 78% of people aged 34-45 selected this option) is also key.
MISSING CONCEPT #3: Accountability drives behavior change
We all know how easy it is to ignore an email from a personal finance app. But if that email, SMS or in-app message comes from someone that we’ve been matched with and we have committed to work with them on our goals, it’s a very different story. The trick is how to scale that accountability (more on that in another email).
Last week, we were discussing with our research partners at Duke how we could get the word out on these concepts so that your current and future financial wellness programs will achieve better results. We decided to put together a cheat sheet to show you what you need to know. Introducing, the first ever cheat sheet on the 3 Key Concepts Missing from Financial Wellness Programs:
The financial wellness cheat sheet contains all new material that:
Retiremap is a research-backed employee financial wellness program designed with Duke University and renowned Professor Dan Ariely to help employees achieve their financial goals.
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