Covid-19 has impacted the way that many employers approach employee wellbeing. Businesses have started to reconsider the importance they place on the financial wellbeing of their employees after the significant financial strain they have been placed under for the past year and a half. Financial wellbeing programs are no longer an added benefit but a necessity for an engaged and productive workforce. 

To put this is context, 89% of employees in South Africa are concerned about their ability to pay their bills. Additionally, 80% of employees are unable to make it to the end of the month. The level of stress these places employees under is monumental and minimizes their ability to prioritise anything other than survival. Ultimately this results in 20% of employee absenteeism being a result of financial stress. Figures like these severely decrease company revenue because of the decline in overall productivity. 

Not having a financial wellness program means as an employer you are spending a significant portion of your workday on time consuming admin. Worse, it means employees do not have access to financial protection and insurance which prevents them from becoming over-indebted and going to unreliable credit providers. Ultimately what this leads to is a workforce that is snowed under by financial stress which adversely affects their productivity. 

Partnering with a financial wellness provider such as SmartAdvance helps you oversee the entire employee wellness journey which includes everything from payroll services to developmental credit.

SmartAdvance provides a holistic employee wellness solution:

Payroll services

Finclusion has recently announced the acquisition of a strategic stake in HelloHR, a South African payroll software startup. What this means for SmartAdvance clients is that they now have access to a holistic financial wellness product. This acquisition grants SmartAdvance clients access to payroll services which includes the automation of the necessary leave and tax adjustments. Meaning that clients save time and reduce the chance of human error.

Wage streaming

This allows employees to access to a small portion of their earned wages at an earlier date. This gives employees a responsible alternative to taking out a loan from a unreliable lender by giving them the more the option of access to their own wages at an affordable flat rate.

Rehabilitation loans

Give employees the opportunity to improve their credit rating by giving them access to rehabilitation loans. They have the option of getting a loan of up to R50 000 over 36 months so that they can improve credit rating and improve monthly savings.

Developmental credit

Your employees have access to developmental credit which helps them build, expand or improve low-cost housing, thereby helping them improve the community in which they find themselves. 

Behind the Scenes

Making all of this possible is the amazing SmartAdvance team that is supported by the Country Head, Gerrie Fourie.

Gerrie spent almost 10 years starting and managing various finance companies throughout Africa. He started his journey with the Finclusion Group in June 2020, ultimately taking on the role of SmartAdvance Country Head in April 2020.

He was brought in to oversee the successful implementation and managing of all SmartAdvance operations. 

Currently he is tasked with aligning the SmartAdvance strategy with that of the Finclusion Group. This strategy alignment is vital as they have recently received funding and now the responsibility is on him to deploy it and guarantee it is dispersed to the necessary departments.

“Business development is a top priority, because we cannot afford to not move forward. Just because we are successful today does not guarantee it tomorrow.”

Forward momentum is also driven by strategic partnerships, which Gerrie helps forge and nurture. 

“If you want to increase your expertise and resources, create predictable revenue streams and provide incremental lift to sales and revenue, all while keeping acquisition costs down then your ability to solidify strategic partnerships is priceless.”

Day-to-day he is responsible for SmartAdvance’s staff management and reporting. Staff management is a lot easier as face-to-face communication is possible once again as more employees are returning to the office as lockdown regulations are eased.

He is trying to ease the transition back to the office by aligning company culture with the long-term goals of employees and SmartAdvance. He has also busy with tech enhancements which will greatly benefit the success of his employees.

If you are ready to looking after the wellbeing of your employees, get in touch with us to discuss partnering with SmartAdvance.