Inflation is affecting every industry, but can be acutely felt by hourly workers like senior care staff. In May, inflation reached a 40-year high of 8.6%. In particular, the cost of gas, food and rent rose sharply in the last month. Fortunately, there are ways you can help your staff meet the challenges of inflation and help your organization retain employees.
Wage Increases & Bonuses
If it’s in your budget, consider increasing your hourly wages. Even a small raise can make a difference in your employees’ lives. You could also issue a round of one-time bonuses specifically with the intent of easing the burden of inflation. With necessities like groceries rising 1.1% in price month-over-month, this extra cash could be what keeps your employees from seeking other employment or leaving the senior care industry all together.
Earned Wage Access
Nearly two-thirds of workers live paycheck-to-paycheck, and that’s sure to be on the rise along with inflation. Earned wage access gives your employees the ability to access their earned but unpaid wages in between paychecks to help them avoid late fees and pricey payday loan interest rates. Your competitors outside the senior care industry – Amazon, Kroger, Wendy’s – already offer this benefit. Plus, 16% of senior care workers say this kind of benefit is a top valued work perk.
OnShift has an earned wage access solution – OnShift Wallet – that is completely free for our customers and charges minimal-to-zero fees to your employees. The vast majority of OnShift Wallet users (88%) spend their early accessed funds on bills, groceries, rent and unexpected expenses. With costs on the rise, giving your employees earned wage access could be the difference between them paying bills on time or racking up debt. OnShift Wallet also has an added benefit of free financial counseling, which is great if your employees need to reevaluate their budget and savings in light of rising costs.
Free Coffee and Snacks
It might seem like a small gesture, but offering free coffee and snacks in the employee breakroom is an appreciated perk for your busy staff. Coffee shop and vending machine trips can add up, so eliminating that cost for your employees can help ease the pain of inflation.
Local Business Partnerships
Help another local business out while giving your staff some discounts. Connect with a local grocery store, car wash, restaurant, or other business and ask them if they would offer your employees a discount on purchases when they show their work ID badge. The other business gets more customers and your employees save money.
If possible, hold off on any health insurance premium increases this year. Raising benefit prices while prices of nearly everything else go up will not go over well with your staff and could lead to resignations. Look into some healthcare options you can add to your benefits package at no cost to your employees, like free access to telehealth, counseling, or fitness apps.
Average gas prices are closing in on $5/gallon, and most of your employees do not have the option of working from home. Help ease the pain at the pump by organizing an employee carpool, covering the cost of public transit passes, using a community van to pick up employees, or offering a rideshare stipend.
Inflation is adding stress to everyone’s lives right now. Any way – big or small – that you can alleviate some of that stress for your employees and show your understanding of their financial situation can help improve employee satisfaction and retention. For more ideas on supporting senior care staff, download our Biggest Book of Perks.