As we close out what’s been a challenging year, HR professionals have an opportunity to strengthen employees’ trust and loyalty. With the ongoing pandemic, people may be dealing with more unforeseen expenses than usual, especially if their partner lost a job, or if they had health issues, a family member that needed caring for, or work hours that were cut. A survey from J.D. Power showed that 38% say their household income has declined by at least 25% since the pandemic began.

Despite this, people are still looking forward to the holidays and ways to celebrate, give gifts, and spread joy like they would any year. However, a survey from Credit Karma reveals that more than half (54%) of Americans feel more financially stressed about the holidays now than they did last year, and 30% plan on going into debt over the holidays. This should alarm HR professionals, as it creates the potential for employees who are stressed, distracted, and enter cycles of debt that affect their health and well-being as well as their job performance.

Lisa Ball, HR leader at Pack Health, said it best: ““For me as an HR professional, and it’s so important that we provide our employees with all the tools that they need to be successful. Not only as our employees, but also just making sure that we’re providing them with all the tools we can to make their lives easier and better.”

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