The Stevie Awards Blog

How to Retain Your Best Employees Without Breaking the Bank

Posted by Daniel Ferguson on Thu, Jan 16, 2020 @ 09:00 AM

Companies that consistently rank high on the lists of best places to work often have great work cultures, deep-rooted values, and fantastic employee benefits. They go above and beyond state and federally-mandated benefits and offer their employees generous retirement plans, flexible work hours, tuition reimbursements, ample parental leave, and many other tangible and intangible perks. These companies attract and retain the best talent because they truly care for their employees’ well-being.

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What Do Employees Really Want?

While the long list of benefits top companies provide are great, they might not be feasible for most smaller businesses. In these scenarios, companies should identify the “good-to-have” benefits and then investigate what their employees really need and what issues weigh heaviest on their minds.

According to the PwC Employee Financial Wellness Survey, 2019, financial matters cause employees the most stress—more than all other life stressors (health concerns, relationships, job issues, and more) combined. A staggering 30 percent lie awake at night worrying about money, and 23 percent are less productive at work because of financial worries, according to a US employee benefit trends study.

Also, even though the numbers have improved slightly since last year, almost 40 percent of US households still don’t have enough savings to cover an unexpected $400 expense (Report on the Economic Well-Being of US Households).

Investing in employees’ financial health, therefore, is one of the best ways companies can show they care.

Offer Innovative and Affordable Financial Benefits

With the amount of financial stress they are under, one would think employees would opt for pay raises over perks. Surprisingly, though, almost 80 percent of employees chose perks over pay raises in an employee confidence survey by Glassdoor.

Employer-matching 401K, health insurance, financial planning, and student loan repayment are all excellent financial benefits, but corporations (or even small businesses) can also implement several innovative and unique financial benefits alongside these more traditional options.

One good example is Gusto, a human resources management platform based in San Francisco, California, United States, which allows employees to access the money they’ve already earned for emergencies, without having to wait until payday.

cookie_jar_logo-1Another example of an innovative yet affordable financial benefit is Stevie-winner Cookie Jar by SafetyNet, a financial services company based in Madison, Wisconsin, United States. Cookie Jar combines the simplicity of kitchen-table finances with the sophistication of an employer-matched benefits program by rounding employees’ checking account transactions and credit card purchases to the nearest dollar and then saving the spare change in special accounts. These savings can be automatically matched by the employer, and they can be accessed by the employee whenever an emergency arises.

“Cookie Jar is designed for average workers who need to save but don’t feel they have the financial flexibility to do so,” says Vreni Pigorsch, senior media strategist at Cookie Jar. “A salary and a retirement plan are no longer enough to sustain employees, and employers are taking note. Instead, pet insurances; liquid savings programs, such as Cookie Jar; and other accessible financial tools are being incorporated into employee benefit plans. Employees become happier and more focused at work, and employers are able to attract and to retain great talent by setting their benefit structure apart from their competition.”

Cookie Jar won a Silver Stevie® Award in Product Management & New Product Awards in the Financial Services category at the 2019 American Business Awards.

Interested in winning a Stevie Award in 2020?

Request the entry kit here.

Tags: The American Business Awards, product management, financial awards

Community Involvement Rewards Everyone

Posted by Daniel Ferguson on Wed, Dec 04, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

It’s essential in today’s world to try to be part of something bigger than yourself, and this applies not only to individuals but to institutions. If your specialty is helping clients solve financial issues, for example, then you are particularly well placed to help out by problem-solving in the wider community.

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Many big companies have organized programs that encourage their employees to consider volunteering, and they facilitate these acts of service by giving their employees time to do so. Businesses find this experience of giving back continues outside of work hours as well, which creates an ongoing, committed relationship with the given charity or nonprofit. The relationship of the company to the community at large then often becomes an integral part of the corporate culture.

Volunteering Helps Company Culture

Some businesses tend start their volunteer work on a small scale. For example, some companies employ industry education, which helps other professionals excel in their respective fields. This sense of social responsibility often fosters a desire to do even more, which can lead staff members to give their time regularly to local charities.

Stevie-winner Wolters Kluwer Lien Solutions, which is based in Houston, Texas, United States, is one business that describes their experience of volunteering as enlightening and something that has given them fulfillment and made their company feel like a real family with a shared purpose.

A Perfect Match

Wolters-Kluwer_logoThe Lighthouse, a charity that is a member of the United Way of Greater Houston, Texas, United States, helps over seven thousand blind and partially sighted people every year by giving members the tools they need to live independently. When Wolters Kluwer Lien Solutions was looking for a place to volunteer, they came across this local charity, and it seemed like a perfect match. Both were looking for a long-term, meaningful relationship, and that has undoubtedly come to fruition.

Since 1939 the Lighthouse has provided social activities for the blind and visually impaired in the Houston, Texas, United States, area, and they love to welcome volunteers. By providing several volunteers to assist with craft sessions and reading activities during the working day, Wolters Kluwer Lien Solutions proves an excellent fit with the Lighthouse. The partnership ensures the charity can provide sessions in the daytime, which is when their clients need them most.

Giving Back to the Community

Meeting new people and getting a unique perspective into the local community through the staff, volunteers, and service users at the Lighthouse is just one example of how Wolters Kluwer Lien Solutions is committed to supporting its staff members’ communities. The work doesn’t stop with the Lighthouse, though. Employees have also volunteered at a wide range of other nonprofit organizations, such as Children of Military Members in Tampa, Florida, United States; the Nevada Children’s Hospital in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States; and the Tulane Health System in New Orleans, Louisiana, United States.

Raja Sengupta, executive vice-president and general manager at Wolters Kluwer Lien Solutions, is proud of how his team embraces the volunteering mind-set.

“The employees are keen to deepen their relationships with the communities in which they live and to take part in projects where they can get to know and help others,” says Sengupta.

This can-do attitude earned Wolters Kluwer Lien Solutions several Stevie Awards in 2019. For its iLien Motor Vehicle solution, the company earned a Silver Stevie®️ Award in the Financial Services category, as well as a Gold Stevie Award in the Legal Information Solution category at the American Business Awards®️.

Wolters Kluwer received three Silver Stevies for Female Executive of the Year - Business Services - More Than 2,500 Employees on behalf of Jennifer Cronin, VP of Customer Service; Female Executive of the Year - Business Services - 11 to 2,500 Employees on behalf of Alyza Tarmohamed, General Manager; and Most Innovative Woman of the Year - Technology on behalf of Karen Abramson, CEO at the 2019 Stevie Awards for Women in Business.

Interested in winning a Stevie Award in 2020?

Request the entry kit here.

Tags: The American Business Awards, 2019 Stevie Awards for Women in Business, financial awards

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