How Subscription Services are Quietly Destroying Financial Wellness

Recently, I checked my credit card bill and found that I had been paying a $19 a month subscription to DuoLingo for Spanish lessons. I flashed back to a moment 2 years ago where I thought I should really learn more fluent Spanish. I had completely forgotten I subscribed and realized I had just paid close to $500 for something I never used.  It was at that point that I went on a subscription service witch hunt. 

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Future of Work: The Intersection of HR and Marketing

Recently I presented at the @OnCon conference in Orlando, Florida. I discussed the impact of Millennials and Gen Z in the workplace and how their presence challenges us, as leaders, to rethink every aspect of the employee experience. I was joined by peers in Marketing who represent the world’s leading companies from PWC to Marriott International. While passionate discussions about brand, demand generation and digital were creating tremendous conversation, right next door, that same level of passion and fervor was happening with HR leaders representing the world’s leading companies from SAP to UPS.

The discussion I led took place with both HR and Marketing leaders. And guess what? My single presentation was just as critically relevant to both groups of leaders, even though some of the takeaways were different. Observing this collective acceptance of the need to create an experiential workplace was exhilarating. It was at this moment when I realized that the evolution of “experience” has created a unique intersection of marketing and HR that could forever change the way we think about our employees. By the end of the event I created these key realities for HR and Marketing leaders in the new decade:

  • HR Reality #1: Your employee is your customer. Gone are the days when the employer dictates how the work environment looks and feels. Today’s employee has been spoiled by the incredible strides marketers have made in creating over-the-top customer experiences, and those demands have moved into the workplace.
  • HR and Marketing Reality #2: Your buyer/employee is most likely a MAGGIE (Millennial And GenZ – who Get Instant Everything) and if your brand experience, both in and outside of your company, does not facilitate on-demand everything, you are missing the boat!
  • Marketing Reality #3: That a website is meant to be so much more than just a vehicle for demand generation and purchasing. It is the main influencer in your company’s new hire strategy. So be careful as you build your brand — you will attract talent based on that.
  • HR and Marketing Reality #4: Everything is an experience now (yes, even coffee). Email me if you want the slides from the presentation, but start with the most rote thing you can think of and create an experience out of it. That effort will open your eyes to enable you to revisit everything you are doing to attract and keep both customers and employees. You will be surprised at the size of the to-do list that will fall out from there.

At the end of the event, I was honored and thrilled to learn that both my marketing peers and HR experts had voted DailyPay as a top 25 HCM technology. Our progressive thinking and data-driven insights led us to win this award and I can’t wait to see what’s next.

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Whose Loan Is It, Anyway?

While paying employees biweekly or semimonthly may be standard practice, it’s time to analyze whom that schedule truly benefits. When employees are not paid immediately for their labor, they are essentially giving their employer a loan for the entire duration of the pay period. And while this schedule may reduce cost, paperwork and simplify processes for the payroll team, it often has the opposite effect for the employees. Although they may have completed their scheduled shifts and earned hundreds or even thousands of dollars during that period, not having access to those funds until payday can be a major cause of financial and emotional stress. 

Beyond just stress, many hardworking Americans also fall victim to overdraft and late fees when they can’t pay bills on time or they find themselves completely helpless in the face of a financial emergency. Unforeseen car repairs, medical bills, veterinary costs or household emergencies can leave someone in a real bind. Those are the times when many hardworking individuals are forced to go to friends and family or even payday lenders for high-interest loans just to survive. Is all this turmoil a fair exchange for reducing the administrative burden of running payroll more frequently?

This is where alternate payment solutions, such as DailyPay, come into the picture. While many people believe that instant pay technology is akin to a loan or a pay advance, it is actually very different. Since users can only pull from funds they’ve already earned, there is no interest and no repayment. DailyPay simply functions as an ATM for an employee’s own earnings. NPR’s Podcast, Planet Money, recently explored how the daily pay benefit is growing in popularity by helping employees navigate this unfair payday structure. You can listen to the podcast here.

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Enabling Financial Wellness and Killing Off the Payday Loan Industry

If you’ve ever had to live paycheck-to-paycheck, where you’ve been challenged to manage all of your financial obligations between pay dates, and every dollar you earn is designated for payment of some bill (many of which are already overdue), you know how stressful this can be. And it can be even harder to dig out, especially if you take a payday loan.

When an employee has instant access to earned pay (money they have already earned) through a daily pay benefit solution, it helps to relieve this type of financial stress. Workers can access money as bills become due to meet their financial obligations and manage unexpected expenses, without having to add the additional stress of overdraft fees, late charges or payday loan fees and interest. Additionally, the transparency employees have into their accrued earnings allows them to make more informed decisions when it comes to earnings and their spending. For example, an employee may want to pick up an additional shift to meet their financial obligations and lifestyle choices, like having to buy a birthday gift for a family member.

According to Forbes, 78% of all American workers live this scenario every day and the toll that this takes on their mental health and productivity in the workplace is palpable. DailyPay recently conducted a survey of our client’s employee users to find out how access to DailyPay helps them, and what expenses they typically pay using their transferred earnings. Here are the results of that survey:

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