NFP Launches Financial Hub for Employees
13 June 2016 at 10:00 am
A Not for Profit aggregated buying group has launched a financial wellbeing program, offering individual employees in the sector access to professional financial education and advice without the expensive price tag.
Church Resources hopes that Your Wealth Hub will help employees in the sector plan for their future and will in turn lead to a more confident workforce.
Church Resources general manager, brand and product development, Mark Hopcroft, said the new online portal was about getting information out to people would not normally receive this service and may be struggling financially.
“We’ve put together what is an online portal called Your Wealth Hub, where our members can get access to cheap tax returns, low cost will advice or those types of things, or even work their way through to being able to book in for a financial planning type of service,” Hopcroft said.
“So it is trying to get the information out to people who would not normally be offered this type of service because in Not for Profits it doesn’t really happen.
“It is letting people know that these services are available and they are available at very low cost to people who are not on high salaries, to be able to build their own financial plan for the future.”
Church Resources has partnered with Sydney company Noall & Co to create the hub that Hopcroft said came after the organisation realised there was a need in the sector.
“We looked at the amount of staff that work in the sector, and really are not in the highest paid categories in the country, and were really, struggling in some instances, probably as families, to make ends meet,” Hopcroft said.
“So we decided as an organisation that as opposed to just supporting Not for Profits in a business to business sense, we would start looking at ways over a period of time that we would be able to support their staff as well.
“So we set up a program, originally it started as a program called My Benefits, it is now evolving into what we call My Salary Plus, which is a program to help people either purchase discount goods or to be able to buy everyday items and things that they do at discount prices. But we then started to realise its not just about making a saving on something you buy, it’s actually being able to get access to good information as to what you should do in a good investment and financial plan for the future.
“It is not just about your well being and how to spend money wisely, but it is also understanding how to set yourself up for your eventual retirement.”
Hopcroft said there are a lot of people in Australia “going to the wall” because of debt.
“There is a lot of access to credit in Australia these days, there is not a great deal of control around it. People don’t understand the repercussions of say taking a Visa card or a Mastercard that is offered to them from their bank and then just paying minimal payments means that even though you are not getting into trouble with your financier, at the end of the day it might take you 60 years to pay your $5000 credit card off.
“So people need to have access to what is good, professional but also qualified and licensed advice as to how to structure the way of the future.
“We’re hoping that this is something that will not only help young people, because obviously young people are the foundation of the future of our country, but there is a lot of people in middle age out there that have been caught in credit squeeze as well, we’re hoping that through good management and good understanding that they’ll be able to build a much more secure future.
“Sometimes instead of spending an extra $100 a week and going out and enjoying yourself, a $100 in your super could be a very, very good opportunity.
“So it is really about information. It’s really about making something available to a sector that traditionally hasn’t been looked at as an area where people think there should be financial planning or financial support services provided, as an aggregator and as a supplier of a large number of different products to the whole of the Not for Profit sector, we believe we’ve got a very important role to play in getting this type of service out across the board to all of the sectors that we deal in.”
Church Resources are also “leading by example” and encouraging other employers to look after their staff.
“To retain and reward key staff outside a good pay cheque is a necessity for many Not for Profit organisations,” Hopcroft said.
“Companies who have adopted wellness programs for their staff have seen they are saving on average $2000 in absenteeism, presenteeism expenses and lack of overall productivity. Financial wellbeing programs have seen an overwhelmingly positive outcome as part of a general overall wellness program.
“At Church Resources we now pay what is as little as $1 a week for every staff member on our staff to be part of Your Wealth Hub, as an employer we’re making the financial wellbeing program available to all of our staff to use at a cost that we’ve built into our budget system, and we believe that the scope of a dollar a week is within the realm of any charitable organisation or whatever to invest for their staff and we feel that that’s a really good way to be returning something to help their staff for longevity.
“At the end of the day one of the biggest costs in the Not for Profit sector is staff churn, it’s people that leave because they feel they can get something better from somewhere else, we look at this really as a way for employers across all levels, whether they are charities or Not for Profits or even corporates, at the end of the day it’s a way to return something back, at a relatively low cost, but at a very high social return, to each of their staff members.”