Flight Centre Travel Group Joins Forces To Help Those Facing Financial Hardship

The Flight Centre Travel Group (ASX:FLT) has deployed a team of money coaches to help its people improve their financial wellbeing.

The company, which is one of 30 Australian brands to develop an inaugural Financial Inclusion Acton Plan (FIAP), is taking positive steps to improve the financial resilience of its people with the roll out of financial support  to its 10,000 plus Aussie employees.

The 54-point action plan includes a number of initiatives such as access to customised superannuation and insurance products, the roll out of ‘money coaches’ across the FLT network nationally, dedicated financial counselling services for clients in high stress and the adoption of a Financial Stress Indicator to measure and report on overall workplace stress.

FLT’s Financial Literacy and Capability Business Leader, Stacey Beckley, said increasing financial awareness was the number one objective for her business unit, Moneywise.

“We have surveyed our staff and the findings mirror AMP’s Financial Wellness Report of 2016 that suggest financial stress accounts for a 6.9 hour loss in productivity per week.

“The more financially aware we can make our people, the more control they can take of their finances to make smart decisions and avoid getting into unnecessary debt,” Ms Beckley said.

Moneywise has been offered as an internal service to all staff since 1994. The recent roll-out of money coaches across Australia – 13 in total – is designed to help the travel heavyweight ensure its people have access to financial experts who can provide specialist advice and support to frontline travel agents and support staff.

“Money coaches work with our people to help their financial goals become a reality; visiting stores to provide one-on-one coaching for financial goal setting, cash flow/budgeting, debt reduction and maximising their ability to save.

“They also attend Welcome Aboard sessions for new starters so from day one, all our people understand the services and support offered by our Moneywise team,” Ms Beckley said.

FLT is one of 30 Trailblazer organisations leading the way with a formal commitment to provide measurable actions via its FIAP.

“I’m proud to say we are the first organization in the retail travel space to formally recognise the importance of improving the financial resilience of our people,” MD Graham ‘Skroo’ Turner said.

“Demonstrating that we take responsibility for the broader financial capabilities of our people is aligned to our core philosophies and helps us to attract the best people in the industry.”

In 2015, Australia committed to financial inclusion by agreeing to international obligations including the G20 Financial Inclusion Action Plan and the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. As part of this commitment, the Australian Government appointed Good Shepherd Microfinance to develop a FIAP program.

FLT joins 29 other well-known organisations including banks, law firms, charities and universities and collectively, these organisations employ more than 250,000 people and service 80% of the population.