“By empowering our employees to improve their financial wellness, the Payactiv service helps us optimize productivity and provide excellent care to our patients.”
CFO, Baton Rouge General Medical Center
By partnering with Payactiv, Baton Rouge General Medical Center offers the Payactiv financial wellness service as a voluntary employee membership program. Participants access their earned wages and other financial services at a nominal, fixed per transaction fee for employees.
Financial worries were distracting many of the hospital’s hourly workers from their responsibilities to the organization and its patients, while affecting their enjoyment of personal and family life.
Using the Payactiv service employees are taking positive steps to relieve the stress of unforeseen expenses and short-term cash flow issues—avoiding the vicious cycle of spiraling debt from predatory payday loan interest, overdraft fees, and late charges.
Baton Rouge General Medical Center is a full-service hospital with two campuses, 590 licensed beds, and a king-size mission: to continuously improve community health and well-being through education, prevention, and timely access to quality care for patients and hospital staff alike.
To achieve these goals, the Baton Rouge, Louisiana–based hospital places an emphasis on industry-leading HR benefits that enable it to recruit, engage, develop, and retain top talent. In particular, the hospital’s “total rewards” program promotes wellness, balance, and career development, including financial wellness benefits and incentives in the form of discounts and bonuses.
As compensation and development manager at Baton Rouge General, Jared LeDoux witnesses daily the harmful effects of financial stress on the hospital’s 3,000 employees, many of whom are among 38 million American households living paycheck to paycheck.
These workers are financially vulnerable to relatively minor setbacks such as automobile repairs and household appliance failures, which can translate into a stressful distraction at work. Employee financial stress also negatively impacts the hospital because it typically results in lost productivity, absenteeism, accidents, and turnover.
When he discovered Payactiv’s remarkable HR technology, LeDoux knew he had found an effective way to relieve financial stress in the workplace. By providing immediate access to earned wages, without waiting for payday, the Payactiv financial wellness service would empower workers to take charge of their financial situation.
However, before LeDoux could commit to the Payactiv solution, it had to pass muster with Kendall Johnson, the chief financial officer at Baton Rouge General. Johnson was pleasantly surprised when he looked at the price tag: There wasn’t one. “Typical metrics to measure projects, such as return on investment, are not applicable because the Payactiv service requires no out-of-pocket expense for employers,” says Johnson. “In addition, there was no impact to the balance sheet or cash flow.”
Johnson went on to assess how the Payactiv implementation would affect internal groups such as IT, payroll, and human resources. After probing security and operational considerations with the Payactiv team, Johnson was satisfied. “Payactiv is a seamless, turnkey solution that does not require any changes to our business processes,” he says. The Payactiv service interacts independently and transparently with Baton Rouge General’s existing time and attendance and payroll-processing systems using a simple, secure file transfer process. No system integration is required.
The Payactiv service is particularly popular with people in the hospital’s target demographic of workers earning less than $20 per hour.
Internal surveys have found that employees highly value the security, dignity, and savings aspects. Fully 92 percent of employees surveyed are happy that Baton Rouge General provides this financial wellness benefit. And they are signing up in large numbers: Half of the target workers enrolled in the first six months. LeDoux expects the employee participation rate to approach 70 percent by the end of the first year.
Most encouragingly, during the first six months, 67 percent of enrolled employees have used the Payactiv service to access their earned wages. This translates into real savings—on average, $40 per transaction—by avoiding late fees, overdraft penalties, and payday loan costs.
The Payactiv mobile app lets staff members initiate a full range of financial services including immediate access to cash, free bill pay, bank transfers, and automatic savings plans—all from a smart phone or tablet. Payactiv users pay a nominal, one-time fee for each transaction similar to an ATM fee—no interest, no accumulating debt.
Thanks to the Payactiv offering, employees at Baton Rouge General also find it easier to increase their savings and work toward eliminating debt. An innovative option lets staff members designate automatic savings from each paycheck in terms of working time—for example, four hours a week.
Delivering on the hospital’s ambitious vision for community care requires a talented and motivated work force. “Our HR benefits are second to none, which helps us recruit new employees and retain the ones we already have,” LeDoux says. “The Payactiv service is one of the reasons why I can say that.”
Johnson casts Baton Rouge General’s experience in the broader context of the healthcare industry. “To help ensure patient well-being, hospital staffers must be mentally alert at all times,” he says. “That’s hard to do when you’re worried about money. By empowering our employees to improve their financial wellness, the Payactiv service helps us optimize productivity and provide excellent care to our patients.”
“The Payactiv service allows Baton Rouge General to provide comprehensive financial wellness benefits for our workforce without adding any administrative burden.”
—Jared LeDoux Compensation and Development Manager, Baton Rouge General Medical Center