Starbucks employees offered plan to cover all 4 years of college/McDs offers new robust 401k savings plan!

In recefinancial-aidnt months, some of our largest retailers have been protested for their low wages and lack of benefits for employers. Some of these employers are beginning to answer.

Starbucks has expanded their college coverage plan. Starbucks is now covering 4 years’ worth of classes through Arizona State University’s (ASU) online program completely free of charge to employees. ASU covers 42% of the tuition, students are then encouraged to apply for financial aid. Any tuition not covered by financial aid is reimbursed by Starbucks. Some say that this change is coming in light of other companies raising their wages, but others think this is just the next step in Starbucks CEO’s, Howard Schultz’s, initiative to address pressing political and social issues. This new initiative coincides with Shultz’s declaration to hire 10,000 youth who are unemployed and under educated.

McDonalds is also making big moves in terms of offering benefits to employees. They’ve recently implemented a program where employees contributing between 1-4% of their paycheck to a 401K will not only have their contributions matched, but tripled by McDonalds. The next 4% (up to 8%) will be matched dollar for dollar. McDonald’s says the initiative is in an attempt to attract (and keep!) qualified workers.

More Information:

Starbucks: http://www.seattletimes.com/business/starbucks/starbucks-expands-college-plan-says-it-may-cost-250m/

McDonald’s: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/planning-to-retire/2009/01/07/mcdonalds-supersized-401k-match

Would benefits like these make you more interested in working for a company? Which of these do you see as a larger benefit?

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