Finfit uses gamification for financial education
Finfit is hoping to make financial wellness fun — by gamifying its platform.
The financial services company rolled out an update to Ready University, the education portion of its financial wellness platform, in March. The tool now has 38 lessons to train employees on topics including money basics, paying for college, loans and payments, buying a home and planning for retirement.
Finfit wants to make the offering more interactive, by adding opportunities for workers to respond to questions and play short games, says Pete Ostberg, vice president of product management at Finfit.
“We wanted to ensure that people were engaged,” Ostberg says. “So we flipped to a program that really incorporates knowledge checks throughout the course.”
During the lessons, employees partake in small activities to test their financial knowledge. For example, workers reviewing the credit scores module are asked to determine if an activity, like defaulting on a loan or paying bills on time, will increase or decrease their credit score. Once a worker selects a response, they are given immediate feedback, Ostberg says.
“It allows them to think about those activities that could hurt or help their credit score in a fun and engaging way,” he says.
Finfit also has added 15 gamified financial wellness courses for children and teens. Employees who have access to the technology through their employer also can give their children a login, Kristen Stringer, director of operations at Finfit says. These courses are tailored specifically for children of different ages. Courses for elementary school children may focus on the basics of savings while those for high schoolers may focus on paying for college and student loans.
“Our hopes are to start educating our children as young as kindergarten and first grade about age appropriate finances,” Stringer says. “As they get older they are more likely to have higher credit scores and less financial problems then their peers who were not exposed to financial literacy at a young age.”
Finfit’s platform is used by more than 125,000 employers including multi-national food corporation Pilgrim’s Pride and security company G4S. The service is offered as a free voluntary benefit but in some instances Finfit charges a per employee per month fee.
Finfit plans to expand the platform moving forward. David Kilby, president of Finfit, told Employee Benefit News that the company is looking to launch a program in the near future that allows employees to establish savings accounts directly from their payroll. The program will allow workers to move money from their paycheck into an emergency savings account. Kilby says he wants to find ways to help employees achieve their financial goals.
“We have all kinds of opportunities to further assist and help these employees,” he says. “To establish not just behaviors, but actual financial tools that can assist them when they’re dealing with those kinds of challenges.”