Half of Aussie employees relying on payday loans to get by

Cloud-powered people management platform Employment Hero has released a new nationwide study that uncovers the latest insights into the state of employment in Australia, and its impact on the daily lives of everyday Australians.

The study surveyed 1001 full and part-time working Australians and reveals overwhelmingly that employees expect that their jobs should better contribute to both their financial and personal wellbeing.

The data revealed key findings include that half of Australian employees (52 per cent) admit to having difficulty meeting financial commitments, with power bills and credit card balances causing the greatest problems. And over 2.5 million workers have taken out payday loans to meet these financial demands, highlighting the growing amount of debt everyday Australians possess.

Millennials are the generation most inclined to seek these payday loans, with over a third (37 per cent) taking out a loan, compared to Gen X (26 per cent) and Baby Boomers (10 per cent).

One million workers look for added benefits that enable them to save money when weighing up a new job, with millennials most likely to be influenced by an employer’s benefits on offer. More than one million workers would be tempted to leave a job if the employer was not offering benefits, such as discounts on groceries, petrol and gym membership.

The non-financial benefits that appeal most to employees include further education (30 per cent), as well as mental wellness initiatives, like counselling and wellness policies (26 per cent). The key workplace benefits that help maintain the physical and mental wellbeing of Australian employees are: flexible working (63 per cent), evidence the company cares about mental wellbeing (39 per cent) and shows it cares for employees (35 per cent).

The release of this national employment study accompanies a new suite of employee-focused features recently launched by Employment Hero, designed to combat many of the common pain points faced by Australian employees.

Employment Hero’s WorkLife suite aims to redefine the employment experience and help dollars go further for everyday Australians. The new features will help employees better access, manage and save their pay, allow their income to stretch further, improve overall work life and create tangible benefits for life outside of work.

Ben Thompson, founder and CEO for Employment Hero, said, “Australia’s wage price index has trended steadily down over the last decade, impacting directly on employees’ standards of living. With the roll-out of our new suite of features, we are alleviating this burden by assisting, advocating and empowering today’s workforce, and truly transforming the conversation around wages.

“We know over 11 per cent of the working population look for added benefits that enable them to save money when weighing up a new job. We want to help the other 89 per cent realise there’s more to a job than just a wage; it should also play a part in enhancing their quality of life,” Thompson continued.

“Technology has allowed us to spend anytime and anywhere, but it hasn’t given us access to our own money any quicker,” Thompson added. “We want to break this cycle by giving employees access to their own money, when they need it most. On this point, we’ve found that both the prospect of setting your own pay date and tracking spending and savings is especially popular among millennials, who are the future workforce, after all.”

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