ADP to offer SmartDollar’s financial wellness program

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Payroll giant ADP is partnering with SmartDollar to offer the latter’s financial wellness program to thousands of employers, the two companies said this week.

The online and app-based program will be available to the more than 700,000 employers that use ADP, and will join ADP’s other financial program offerings, including advance payday app DailyPay and student loan benefits through administrators Peanut Butter and Gradifi. SmartDollar will be offered as part of the ADP Marketplace platform, the payroll company’s online HR platform.

“At ADP, we offer a holistic financial wellness program that can be customized to meet the workplace needs of employers and their employees,” says Chris Luongo, division vice president of strategy, marketing, and business development at ADP Retirement Services. “We accomplish this by building relationships with providers, like SmartDollar, [that specialize] in delivering financial wellness solutions.”

Created by financial expert Dave Ramsey, SmartDollar is designed to educate employees to proactively take control of their money and get on track for retirement. Through a series of what SmartDollar dubs seven “baby steps,” the program aims to help participants change their behavior toward money and use their income to save and invest instead of paying consumer debt. It combines video tutorials, quizzes and a point system for rewards, along with email inspiration and reminders.

About 4,000 employers, including Costco, Kindred Healthcare, Sonic and M&T Bank, offer SmartDollar as a benefit for their employees.

The partnership is the latest signal of growth for financial wellness programs, which employers are turning to as a way to help employees combat high levels of debt, lackluster retirement savings and increasing financial stress about day-to-day expenses.

“Most Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, and nearly half couldn’t afford a $400 emergency without borrowing money,” says Brian Hamilton, SmartDollar’s vice president.

Roughly half of companies offer some type of financial advice — including resource materials or referrals, online assessment and advice tools, and group instruction and one-on-one advice with a financial counselor — according to the latest benefits report from the Society for Human Resource Management.

See also: Participation in financial wellness programs needs boosting

ADP has been expanding its financial program offerings for employers. In November, it partnered with DailyPay, a company that offers a tool allowing workers access to their earning before payday. At the time, ADP said the partnership aims to help employers “improve financial security and benefit from improved employee retention.”

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Financial planning Financial wellness Financial stress Financial literacy Retirement education Retirement planning Retirement income Retirement readiness HR Technology