News > Meet ALICE: Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed

Meet ALICE: Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed

Why do I want to know ALICE?

For competitive reasons, you want to know ALICE. Really? For competitive reasons? Yes. ALICE can drastically improve the productivity of your workforce.

ALICE is:  Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed.  It’s an acronym coined in 2009 by a United Way organization in New Jersey that identifies issues negatively impacting low wage earners.

For ALICE workers, absenteeism is a common problem.  Absenteeism leads to turnover which leads to a less productive workforce that is poorly trained, new, or unmotivated.

The men and women who are ALICE have an income that is too high to qualify for Medicaid and is too low to have financial stability.  For ALICE, it’s more nerve wracking than living paycheck to paycheck.

What Makes an ALICE Employee?

A fender bender or a flat tire is a catastrophe and makes it impossible for ALICE workers to pay the rent. When their kid drops their school laptop, an ALICE worker pays for the new one by turning off a cell phone and having ketchup sandwiches for dinner.

ALICE workers are employed in all industries including retail, banking, food service, sales, manufacturing, hospitality, customer service and construction.

Low-wage, economically-fragile workers deal regularly with problems and issues that would immediately overwhelm many of us.  It’s a shock that some of our employees are serving our customers while they worry about where they are going to get affordable food, how they are going to get to work, and what to do with their children because the cash-only daycare center just called and said that their children cannot come there anymore because they are not paying promptly.

How can we reduce turnover and increase ALICE worker productivity?  We can provide a comprehensive support system that fills in the cracks for employees fighting for economic stability.  Employers’ support helps ALICE workers change the trajectory of their lives.

The added bonus is that it gives meaning to our work and is a motivation for generating profits.  At Dasher, our entire team is engaged in something that is much bigger than one individual.  It is changing lives.

In our next blog entry, “The Flat Tire Story”, we shed light on the downward spiral caused by unanticipated expense.

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