Month: August 2018

Kashable Conversations: Featuring William Tincup

William Tincup and Jameson Fauver Interview

Kashable’s VP of Business Development, Jameson Fauver, recently spoke with HR industry thought leader and President of, William Tincup.

The two discussed the state of financial well-being in America and the opportunities that exist for HR professionals to leverage financial wellness programming as a competitive advantage for recruitment, retention and employee engagement.

You can listen to the full discussion on SoundCloud. Here are some of the highlights of the conversation:

 Note: The below excerpts have been edited for clarity and concision.

The Lack of Affordable Credit in Modern Financing

Jameson Fauver - Kashable Jameson Fauver: Most American workers, 78 percent, live paycheck-to-paycheck and about half of Americans can’t cover an unexpected expense of around $400. For a lot of people, when the unexpected happens – emergencies, time of hardship, medical expenses, car repairs, etc. – people don’t have a good place to turn and their paycheck can’t cover it.

Traditionally, 20-30 years ago, big banks might have been in the business of providing an unsecured loan to more people, but now they only serve the top 10 percent. In recent times, when emergencies happen, the average American is dipping into their 401(k), asking their employer for a pay advance, or reaching out to a high-interest option because those banks aren’t there to serve them.

There’s this void here where most Americans don’t have access to immediate, affordable, transparent, responsible credit. So how do you how do you provide low-cost credit to Americans across the credit and wage spectrum?

At Kashable, we [realized that] healthcare and retirement companies have been delivering product through the employer for decades. There are underwriting and transactional efficiencies, and it’s just a really nice place to operate. As a lender operating through the employer, we can get repaid through payroll [which] mitigates a ton of risk. 

If we can rely on the employer to vet [Kashable], stand behind us and tell their employee base that [we’re] a lender that [they] can really trust because there are protections in place, it just makes a lot of sense [to operate this way]. So that’s what we did about four years ago. We said, [Let’s] help fill this void and give working Americans access to low cost credit [by] operating through the employer.’ So that’s what Kashable is doing. We’re lending money that gets repaid through payroll deduction over 6, 12, 18, 24 months.

William Tincup PicWilliam Tincup: I love this on like 19 different levels. This is just yet another way for companies to engage their employees. This is easy for them, because [Kashable] is through payroll, so it gets us away from the predatory ‘Ace Cash Express’, or payday loans or loan sharks and other nefarious types the types of things.

Things happen and occasionally you just need to have access to a small loan. It’s going to be taken out of your paycheck, so you don’t have the option of whether you can repay it or not. If you’re going to take the loan, you’re going to pay it back and this is how it’s going to be done.

I love it. I don’t think it’s just a blue-collar issue, I think this goes across the strata. I like that [Kashable] fits across industries. I like that HR can then go to their employees and say, ‘Hey this happens, no judgment. We get it.’

New Opportunities from HR Technology Advancement

William Tincup: Why hasn’t this been done before?

Jameson Fauver: I think the main reason is that the technology advances in the last 5-10 years make it easier. There are a lot of transactions that take place in our system, and the fact that we can build our software on the cloud and we have these [transactions] happen seamlessly and it’s all automated – it just wouldn’t have been able to happen 15-20 years ago. We partner with the largest benefit administration companies out there – like Alight Solutions and Benefitfocus – their technology 10-15 years ago wouldn’t have been able to [support our technology].

financial wellness voluntary benefits planning

Recruiting Top Talent with Competitive Voluntary Benefits

Jameson Fauver: It’s a very competitive employment market, so HR folks are doing everything they can to consider and add more benefits [to] help with their recruiting and retention [efforts]. HR folks are looking outside of just the core health/dental/retirement [offerings]. They need to add some more value and by offering products like Kashable, they can [often] do it at no cost.

William Tincup: What’s compelling is that you hit on the things that I really love – it’s the recruitment of talent, [caring] about the whole employee. We, [the company], care about you at your best and when things are hard for you. We’re not going to give up on you, and we’ve got some programs in place to take care of you.

These companies are trying to figure out ways to build a better relationship with their employees and engage them on a deeper level than a paycheck. Because [companies] believe that 80 percent of the value of a firm comes to 20 percent of the workforce. That’s what succession is built around.

Those folks we might think of as A players – we might have an idea that those people are the ones that are fiscally conservative and that they’re the ones that would never need [something like Kashable], and we’d be wrong.

[Kashable] is yet another tool, another arrow in the quiver, to retain their top talent. It goes all the way across the value chain – it helps recruit talent, because there’s a great story [for companies to say] ‘we want the whole you, we’re recruiting the whole you, because we see the value of the whole you, and this is a way for us to programmatically puts things in place to help you.’

employee financial wellness benefits

On being a versatile wellness benefit

Jameson Fauver: We’re a versatile benefit, [because] we affect so many different parts of the benefits landscape. If you broke it down into health, wealth, and wellness, let’s say. Healthcare, right? [With] rising out-of-pocket medical expenses and these high deductible health plans, employers are worried that their employees are preventing care and delaying necessary healthcare, which can then turn into catastrophic claims later.

A lot of employers look at us and say, ‘Hey Kashable could be a really good way to give our employees a tool, access to some credit, so they’re not worried about these out-of-pocket costs they can at least cover them to get the necessary care they need.’ And then other employers have issues on the wealth side [are saying], ‘Hey, 30 percent of my employees are taking loans from their 401(k). They’re depleting their retirement income. They’re treating their 401(k) like a bank account. They’re not going to have enough money to retire on time.’

Financial Wellness Voluntary Benefits

Boosting Employee Engagement with Financial Wellness

Jameson Fauver: If we can help alleviate financial stress and get people back to work, and present while they’re at work, I think we can help workforces become more productive.

William Tincup: That’s right. At the end of the day this makes people’s lives better and it makes work better. The whole concept of engagement is to get people productive. It’s a fancy word for discretionary effort. We’re trying to get more out of what we we’ve invested in our employees. That’s not a bad thing, it’s a good read. So how do we do that? What things do we need to put in front of [employees] that help them come into work and be focused on work? For HR, it’s an opportunity to show that you actually care about employees. It could also possibly even help you become a best place to work – an employer of choice.

There are three questions that [job candidates] didn’t ask – even five years ago. How are you going to train me? And how are you going to reward me? How are you going to recognize me? That’s where you all come in. In a really interesting way, what [candidates] are trying to say is, “How are you going to accept the whole me? Because I want to bring the whole me to work.”

And y’all [Kashable] have a really cool play in dealing with the whole person at work. It isn’t an idealized, perfect thing. People are flawed, mistakes in their lives happen. Companies have to do a better job on the recruiting side of saying, “Here’s how we’re going to take care of you.” It’s not just words on a page. That’s the thing, you can actually bring it to life with programs and show people, ‘You’re joining a family, and here’s how we’re going to take care of you, to make sure you’re productive, but you’re [also] engaged and you’re happy. Your happiness actually means something to us.

Kashable Employee Financial Wellness Benefit

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