SANTA MONICA, Calif., April 14, 2015 Tuition.io, the market leader in student loan management, has announced the launch of flex395.com, a new student loan employee benefits product. Tuition.io gives employers the ability to contribute directly to their employees' student loans and is designed to serve as a hiring and retention tool, similar in function to a 401(k) match. Flex395™ marks the introduction of a new kind of employee benefit that addresses the $1.21 trillion in outstanding U.S. student loans largely held by younger employees burdened with record balances.
Flex395™ gives employees the ability to organize and optimize their student loans while also accelerating payments through employer loan contributions. "It's really simple. Employers invite their teams to use Tuition.io and then, based on contribution criteria, we facilitate the extra payments directly to the borrowers' student loan servicers," said Brendon McQueen, Tuition.io's Founder and CEO. The whole process is designed to measure and deliver return on investment for both employees and their employers.
"Young people neither willingly adopt nor care about 401(k) products. However, 70 percent of college graduates are finishing school with student loan balances averaging nearly $30k," McQueen said. "We're introducing this product as an alternative or addition to products from companies like Prudential, Fidelity or Vanguard. The question is not whether 401(k)s are beneficial - of course, they are - but rather what benefits employers can offer that are most relevant and attractive to young, talented employees."
Retaining young employees has become an increasingly competitive endeavor as the typical millennial (age 25-34) stays in his or her job for an average of only three years2 at a time. By offering an innovative employee benefits package that is tailored to their needs, employers can hire and retain competitive talent.
And it's not just millennials who struggle to pay off student loans. Student loan borrowers exist in all corners of the workforce. "A large percentage of our team members carry some level of student debt," said Chris Webb, CEO of ChowNow. "Helping them pay back their loans is something we are thrilled to do and we believe will have an immediate, positive impact on their lives," Webb said.
To put this product into context for borrowers, an employer contribution of $600 annually on an average loan balance of $30k3 with a 6.6 percent interest rate and a term of 10 years would surface interest savings and pay-off time savings of nearly 20 percent. In other words, a borrower would save more than $2k in interest costs and nearly two years of payments with a Flex395™ plan.
In addition to the cost savings, Flex395™ will make the notoriously complex and confusing student loan process simpler for borrowers. The student loan crisis was put on center stage last month when President Obama unveiled a Student Aid Bill of Rights that urged members of government to fix the problems the system causes borrowers.
"Student loans impose a trillion dollar plus burden on borrowers, their families, and our entire economy; they are the only form of debt that cannot be forgiven in bankruptcy, and it is time for Congress to act and fix this problem," said Dan Rosensweig, CEO of Chegg. "Today, Chegg is taking action by partnering with Tuition.io to provide financial aid and guidance to our employees with student debts, and we're calling on all companies to take action and put addressing student loans on their own agendas."
Flex395™ provides employers with a way to help new hires quantifiably pay off their loans in significantly less time. Fixing the student loan crisis for 40 million borrowers is no small feat, but the introduction of Flex395™ may inspire some to consider how a private sector solution could potentially solve a national and public sector crisis.
Tuition.io is the nation's leading student loan management platform which has helped tens of thousands of borrowers organize nearly $2 billion in outstanding loans since launching in early 2013. Typical users increase their monthly payments by between 4-8 percent and the site has shown a drastic 20 percent reduction of delinquent loans. The company was started after CEO Brendon McQueen graduated from Columbia University with 12 student loans and little understanding of his options.