In today’s competitive talent marketplace, student loan assistance is an emerging benefit that any company can offer to encourage the younger generation to join or stay with their company. How a company can implement this can vary greatly. There are plenty of examples of unique offerings of this benefit, but this article focuses on three common HR initiatives that you might have on your plate for 2019: recruiting, retaining, and engagement.
A recent survey by the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) reported 94% of leaders feel employee engagement is an important or very important workforce challenge. An engaged workforce increases operational income by over 19%, while a disengaged workforce can drain over 34% of an organizations’ operational income. Additional risks of low engagement can be seen in increased turnover, low customer satisfaction ratings and even increased employment litigation.
Employee retention continues to be a top concern for employers, even more so than last year, according to a PayScale survey of more than 4,000 executives and human resources professionals.
In 2014, a staggering 59% of employers were more concerned about retaining talent than anything else. Five years ago, only half of those employers thought retention was their number one concern.
According to the Federal Reserve, 44 million Americans owe a staggering $1.56 trillion in student loans, and the average incoming college-educated worker has over $37,000 in student debt (a $20,000 increase from just 10 years ago). As a result, the average college grad will take over 21 years to pay off their student loan debt making minimum payments. Many of the negative effects of overwhelming student debt include delaying the decision to buy a house or start a family, save for retirement, or just cause a tremendous amount of financial stress.
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