Student Loan Repayment Is The Hottest Employee Benefit Of 2018

Forbes reports:

“It’s the hottest employee benefit of 2018.

Student loan repayment assistance.

Vacation time, 401k plans and health insurance are great, but what recent graduates really want is help repaying their student loan debt.

Here’s what you need to know and how you can benefit from this growing employee work benefit.

Student Loan Debt Statistics

According to the latest student loan debt statistics from personal finance site Make Lemonade, there are more than 44 million borrowers who collectively owe $1.5 trillion in student loans. Student loans are now the second largest consumer debt category after mortgages. On average, graduates of the Class of 2016 owe $37,000 in student loans, and graduates of the Class of 2017 owe almost $40,000 in student loan debt.

To attract and retain recent graduates, in particular, companies are expanding their employee benefit programs to help reduce student loan debt for their employees.

Here are 10 trailblazing companies that will help you pay off your student loans faster in 2018:

1. Fidelity

Employees at the manager level and below of this leading financial services company are eligible to receive up to $2,000 per year (up to $10,000 total) toward repayment of their student loans. The “Step Ahead Student Loan Assistance” benefit also provides employees with online tools to help them better manage their student loan debt. Fidelity estimates that approximately 25% of its employees have student loan debt. Another positive: since the student loan benefit is paid monthly, an employee who leaves Fidelity does not have to repay the benefit.

2. Aetna

This healthcare company offers up to $2,000 in matching student loan payments (up to $10,000) for full-time employees and $1,000 (up to $5,000) for part-time employees. To qualify, an employee must have earned an undergraduate or graduate degree within three years of applying for the program.

3. Penguin Random House

Penguin Random House is the first book publishing company to offer student loan repayment assistance. Penguin Random House will pay $1,200 per year (up to $9,000) in student loan repayment benefits for any full-time employee who has worked at the company at least one year. Gradifi is administering the student loan benefit.

4. PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC)

The global accounting and consulting firm offers associates and senior associates up to $1,200 per year up to $7,200 toward an employee’s student loan debt. PwC is working with Gradifi, an employee benefit platform, to assist with its student loan repayment plan.

5.  Abbot

The health care company is helping its employee repay student loans and save for retirement in a unique way. If an employee contributes 2% of their paycheck to student loan repayment, Abbott will provide a 5% match to the employee’s 401k retirement plan.


6. Nvidia

The technology company offers its full-time and part-time employees up to $6,000 per year (up to $30,000) in student loan repayment benefits. Each month, Nvidia will pay the lesser of $500 and the employee’s required total monthly student loan payment amount. To be eligible, employees must work at the company for at least three months and have graduated within the last three years.

7. First Republic

The private bank and wealth management company provides its employees with a tiered student loan repayment benefit. The student loan repayment benefit is $1,200 the first year of employment, $1,800 the second year and $2,400 in all subsequent years. There is no lifetime cap on the student loan repayment benefit. Both full-time and part-time employees are eligible, as are employees who have borrowed an educational loan on behalf of their child. (Disclosure: First Republic is a partner of Make Lemonade).

8. Chegg

The education and technology company offers both full-time and part-time employees up to $1,000 annually to help repay their student loans. There is no cap on the amount of student loan repayment that employees can receive. Like Fidelity, Chegg partnered with to administer the student loan repayment benefit.

9. Live Nation

The live entertainment events promoter and venue operator offers its employees $100 per month to repay their student loans, with a total benefit of $6,000 in student loan repayment. .

10. Staples

The retailer helps full-time sales associates repay their student loans with $1,200 per year (up to $3,600).

What if your company doesn’t offer student loan repayment assistance?

There are other ways to tackle your student loans. Your best bet is to refinance student loans through student loan refinancing, which can lower your interest rate and help you pay off your student loans faster.

You can also make extra payments – in addition to your minimum payment – to reduce your principal balance. Every dollar counts, even small amounts. This student loan prepayment calculator can show you how much you can save.

While this employer list is by no means comprehensive (there are many more companies offering student loan repayment assistance), expect this benefit to spread to other companies that want to recruit and retain a loyal employee base.

It’s employee-centric. It’s forward-thinking. It’s solution-oriented.