Advance Financial’s Chief Experience Officer Tina Hodges sent a welcome email on Friday to employees in all 84 of the company’s locations in Tennessee.
The email announced that due to President Trump’s successful passage of tax reforms and cuts, the company will be sharing the considerable corporate tax savings with its employees in the form of increased 401(k) contributions, profit sharing, and for their local communities, increases in donations to their charity, the Advance Financial Foundation.
The combined effect of the changes announced Friday morning will include an additional $500,000 to employees and more than $550,000 to community organizations, for a total of a little more than $1 million annually.
Advance Financial is not alone in their decision to raise worker benefits in response to the tax cuts. Companies around the country have announced similar programs since the passage of President Trump’s signature economic program this week.
Banking giant Wells Fargo announced earlier this week that they will use their tax savings to ratchet their employees’ starting wage to $15 an hour, and next year, they would increase their charitable giving by $400,000. Fifth Third Bank announced they will follow suit with a $15 an hour starting wage.
AT&T, Comcast, Boeing, and other companies also announced they would be awarding many employees with bonuses on $1,000 or more, and also announced additional capital investments which means more and better jobs will be available for people to fill and excel.
Here in Tennessee, Advance Financial’s Tina Hodges said the company wanted to make changes that had real, lasting impact, noting that the company’s average starting wage “is already more than $15 an hour, so that wasn’t really a starting point for us like some other companies.”
“We wanted to do something that would be multi-year, not just a one-time bonus. The tax reform will benefit us for years to come and we wanted the impact on our team to be the same,” Hodges said.
A copy of the employee email was sent to The Tennessee Star, and it outlines specifically how much of an increase employees will see:
TO: Advance Financial Employees
From: Tina Hodges, Chief Experience Officer
Subject: Sharing tax savings with Advance Financial team members
Good morning and Happy Friday.
I am excited to bring you good news today that will positively impact all of our families and our communities in 2018.
This week our United States Congress passed a tax reform bill that will save our company and you money. When President Trump signs the tax bill into law, our company and you will have income that we no longer have to mail to Washington.
We’ve decided on three specific ways to pass along the tax savings to our team and the communities we serve.
(1) We will increase our 401k match from 3% to 5% for all employees.
(2) We will increase the profit share potential for front-line retail employees from 3% to 5%.
(3) We will increase our Advance Financial Foundation giving by 8%.
The net effect will be an additional $500,000 to employees in 2018 and over $550,000 in total giving to our communities.
Mike and I have always been committed to sharing our success with everyone at Advance Financial. We couldn’t be more excited about this opportunity and the difference it will make to our families and our communities.
We hope you and your family have a very Merry Christmas!
Tina & Mike
Raising employees’ 401(k) contributions from 3 percent to 5 percent represents a 66.6 percent increase in Advance Financial’s matching contribution to workers’retirement funds, a return they will see with each pay period.
Similarly, the announcement lifting the profit-sharing potential from 3 percent to 5 percent also represented a 66.6 percent increase.
The largest shift upward, though, is seen with the decision to raise the company’s commitment to charitable giving by a notably high 8 percent.
In contrast to Boeing and AT&T, Advance Financial began accelerating their capital investments early on in the Trump administration. Advance Financial’s Hodges said that beginning with the upset election of President Trump in November 2016, the company immediately acted to position itself for growth.
“Because we believed the new administration was committed to doing what it takes to get America’s economy back on track, we are already ahead of the curve this year in terms of capital investments,” Hodges said.
“We dramatically sped up our plans to open new locations – we’re opening the 85th one this morning in Jackson – and hire more employees – we are bringing on 100 new people in January – as well as expand our reach outside of Tennessee,” she noted.
“In 2017, for the first time, we began offering our services outside the state via the Internet and today we are in 10 states other than Tennessee,” Hodges said.
Advance Financial is a private, Tennessee-owned short-term financial services company with 84 locations across the Volunteer State. The company has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and was named a Top Work Place by The Tennessean.
– – –
Editors Note: Advance Financial is a Tennessee Star advertiser