Why Pitney Bowes offers employees weekly payday advances and free training
Enterprise shipping company Pitney Bowes has more than 11,000 employees worldwide, spanning warehouse operations and drivers, engineers and IT. The shortage of talent in the shipping and logistics sector, as well as bottlenecks in the supply chain, prompted the company’s senior vice president and CHRO Andrew Gold to double down on personalized benefits and employee programs that will be widely adopted and ultimately build retention and employer branding.
For today’s Friday spotlight, Gold shares its efforts to improve the company’s employee experience.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Fortune: What does creating a “good” employee experience involve in today’s workplace?
Prioritizing the employee experience requires us to shift our perspective and understand how employees perceive their work environment. What makes improving the employee experience so difficult is all that goes into creating experiences. It starts as soon as a potential candidate visits a job site and continues as they progress through their career with the company, including how they are relocated. It is affected by company culture, management and employee teams, opportunities for growth, compensation and benefits, physical conditions in a facility, human resources, and many other factors.
What does this look like in practice at Pitney Bowes?
First, we needed to determine what should be included in our concept of employee experience. To do this, we used external research and feedback from our employees, as well as design sessions. Next, we created a project management office team to manage the various activities we identified. As part of this work, we had to determine owners for each area, many of which were outside of HR, such as IT and managers. Our initial focus was the onboarding process for our shipping and postal sorting businesses, as improving retention in these areas would lead to measurable improvements in productivity.
So how do you meet the diverse needs of your employees across all functions?
Many aspects of creating an engaging employee experience are fundamentally the same, regardless of role. Do employees feel part of a team? Are employees treated with respect and empathy? Do employees have the opportunity to grow?
Managers, especially frontline managers, must have the tools to inclusively lead a diverse workforce. We recently launched an inclusive global leadership program for all managers and are launching training on how to have ‘crucial conversations’. We also have our “PB Bucks” program, designed to recognize our sorting employees in real time, and a variety of training programs (formal and experiential) that help all levels of employees develop new skills and prepare for their next opportunities.
Pitney Bowes has unique benefits like upfront tuition payment and weekly salary advance. Why did the company choose to invest in such offers?
We look for benefits packages that help employees grow their careers, help them in their personal lives, and drive attraction and retention. We offer payday advances and recently moved our hourly sort employees to weekly pay based on their feedback and what was needed to be competitive. We offer free training, including ESL classes, to help employees develop their careers.
What advice would you give your colleagues on how to keep workers happy?
Listen to your employees and candidates, not only about their compensation and benefits, but also about their frustrations, the skills they want to develop, and what’s going on in their personal lives. Recognizing that making sure a bathroom is clean or that there are enough microwaves in the break room can also be a determining factor in the satisfaction of a certain type of employee.
Give me your news! What are the biggest HR challenges and priorities today? Contact me at [email protected]. I lead 15-minute desksides with HR and DEI executives. You will be able to see your answer in a future newsletter.
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Highlights of the latest HR benefits news and benefits news.
In recent years, the benefits of education have shifted from a luxury to an essential talent supply. Gone are the days when companies could simply wave the carrot around tuition reimbursement for traditional four-year degrees. This week, I spoke to Jill Buban, Managing Director and Vice President of EdAssist Solutions at Bright Horizons, about the changing landscape of education benefits, which now takes into account the career path of employees. .
“Ten years ago, [education benefits] were a “nice to have”…now it’s used as that great EQ. It is a DEI initiative, it is a way to attract and retain talent; all these things. And so I think we’ve looked at ways to take the best practices in education – stackable degrees, competency-based learning, career paths – and weave them into the world of education benefits. Ten years ago that would have been tuition reimbursement. You take the course, you get the grade required by your company policy, and then you get reimbursed…it’s a definite change.
Around the table
– When teleworkers have to come to the office for in-person meetings, who should cover the costs? In large companies, employers pay the costs. The same cannot be said for small businesses. The Washington Post
– Leaders have become more vulnerable in the workplace as empathetic leadership becomes more common. But some risk going too far, making employees feel uncomfortable. New York Times
– The California Department of Civil Rights is investigating Pinterest. One of the witnesses called to testify is Ifeoma Ozoma, an elder public policy officer at Pinterest, which alleged in a viral Twitter thread that it regularly suffered from gender discrimination within the company. Protocol
– Starbucks is accused of creating a “culture of fear” among employees to discourage union organizing efforts. The National Labor Relations Board filed 21 complaints against Starbucks, consisting of 548 allegations of labor law violations. Guardian
– The “silent shutdown” debate rages on, with a host of business leaders like Arianna Huffington and Kevin O’Leary. The main question: Are silent quitters who set healthy boundaries between work and personal life or just bad team players? The Wall Street Journal
The latest movements of HR executives.
International Council appointed mandy jeffreythe old VP of People at Workday, as the new Director of Human Resources. Figma has promoted its former vice president of talent, Nadia Singerto CPO.
Do you have a move? Let me know: [email protected]
Everything you need to know about Fortune.
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Belonging crisis. The best way to stop the big quit is to make sure employees feel a sense of belonging in the office, writes Anthony Silard, associate professor of leadership at Luiss Business School, in a comment for Fortune. He lists three ways companies can engender a positive belonging culture: kindness, social connection and… a return to the office. —Antoine Silard
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