Aged care industry turns to financial wellness tools to attract staff: Wagestream
SYDNEY, October 27 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Financial wellness fintech Wagestream has signed with Southern Cross Care, Vacenti and CareChoice in quick succession this month, as Australian aged care and care companies increasingly turn their attention to towards innovative, technology-enabled financial wellness tools to address today’s talent and hiring crises.
Josh Vernon, CEO of Wagestream Australia
Overall, Southern Cross Care Queensland, Vacenti and CareChoice employ around 2,500 people caring for over 10,000 vulnerable Australians.
They will join a cohort of more than 500,000 older and healthcare workers on the Wagestream platform globally, which already serves Bupa and 300,000 National Health Service (NHS) staff in the UK alone.
Adopting a technology-enabled “financial wellbeing” strategy for Australian aged care workers could help address a growing national workforce crisis as well as the unique structural challenges facing the industry.
Aged care is notoriously poorly paid, with many workers (mostly women) living on paycheck to paycheck, struggling to bring income in line with expenses and being hit with an additional ‘small penalty’ due to fees being late and using expensive credit cards or payday loans. cope.
There has also been a significant lengthening of pay periods for employees – sometimes even beyond a month – due to the widespread use of part-time shift work and the use of placement agencies.
And its large proportion of older employees, English as a second language (ESL), and immigrants may also struggle with financial literacy and reading fluency, and additional financial commitments like remittance payments. .
To combat this, the Wagestream”Flexible compensationallows users to access a percentage of their salary when faced with a shortfall for a transaction cost of only $2.49 to avoid the wrong penalty, while his “Track(the most used feature worldwide) allows employees to see their earnings in real time, so they know when to take extra shifts.
There “Growing up“allows employees to automate transfers to fill savings gaps related to family responsibilities and part-time work, while”Coachoffers live chat with financial coaches to work on financial behaviors, goal setting, action plans, and any unique financial questions.
All of these tools in tandem could help improve the financial security, engagement, education, literacy and general well-being of employees in the care sector, according to Wagestream.
Josh VernonCEO of Wagestream Australia, said: “The aged care sector has been hit hard by COVID-19, now entering its third year. We are witnessing the effects of years of overwork, stress, fear, loss and sadness. Many workers are exhausted and reassessing what’s really important – including their workplace.
“But many of the problems in the sector also existed before the pandemic, which has simply exacerbated them. Workers have also always been hit harder by economic challenges such as the current cost of living pressures.
“Care employers must urgently recognize that the financial well-being of their employees is inextricably linked to their job satisfaction and productivity. Forward-thinking employers will therefore find ways to offer practical tools and practical guidance that address these unique challenges and allow employees to live more comfortably, so they can better enjoy their work.”
Australia Case Study: Southern Cross Care Queensland
Southern Cross Care Queensland (SCCQ) has partnered with Wagestream to July 2022, and now offers the app to more than 1,100 staff who care for more than 2,000 vulnerable Australians. One in four SCCQ team members have used the Wagestream app since it became available.
Head of the People and Culture Service of the SCCQ, Adam Priestsaid: “Engagement with your staff should be more than ‘thank you for coming to our monthly barbecue.’ Staff seek employers who understand their unique challenges and offer practical ways to support their physical, mental and financial well-being.
“For example, our predominantly female workforce comes from a wide variety of backgrounds, so their financial circumstances may involve additional care obligations or payments to family overseas. When addressing their financial well-being, these different circumstances must be taken into account.
“We believe the Wagestream financial wellness app will be absolutely helpful to the majority of our frontline workers at some point during their stay with us. It offers ways to increase your savings and set goals, and as we head into a pretty turbulent time with inflation and interest rates rising, obviously people are looking for help in that space as well.We’re really pleased and not at all surprised that a quarter of our staff have already tried the app, and we expect that number to grow.
“We believe that taking care of our staff and their families and taking care of ourselves will naturally lead to better talent attraction and retention. Wagestream is certainly part of our strategy to achieve this.”
Wagestream (www.wagestream.com/au/) is the financial wellness app founded by charities, designed for employees and built around compensation. It makes work more inclusive, fair and rewarding for one million people, giving them access to fair financial services built around their earnings.
Workers use Wagestream to choose their own pay cycle, manage their budget, save for bad weather, chat with a personal financial coach, and get fairer deals on financial products – all in one app, with no changes to payroll.
Wagestream is guided by a social charter: every service it provides must measurably improve financial well-being. Over 70% of people using Wagestream feel more in control of their money, resulting in a happier, healthier and more productive workforce.
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