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Home / case studies / Case study: How State Street promotes a healthy work-life balance for its employees

Case study: How State Street promotes a healthy work-life balance for its employees

State Street is one of the world’s largest providers of financial services to institutional investors, with operations in more than 100 geographic markets worldwide including the US, Canada, Australia, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. The human capital aspect of its business, including how it engages with and supports its employees, is material to State Street’s long-term success. Accordingly, State Street offers a host of resources and services to support its employees in maintaining a healthy work-life balance.  Tweet This!

This case study is based on the 2019 Corporate Responsibility Report by State Street published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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To make sure that it attracts and develops the industry’s top performers, State Street is dedicated to providing the tools and resources they need to do their best work every day, including comprehensive and flexible benefit programmes. In order to promote a healthy work-life balance for its employees State Street took action to:

  • implement a flexible work programme
  • apply the BeWell Programme
  • provide parental and caretaker support
  • offer benefits

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2019 Corporate Responsibility Report State Street identified a range of material issues, such as climate change, ESG products and services, operational and cyber resilience, inclusion and diversity. Among these, promoting a healthy work-life balance for its employees stands out as a key material issue for State Street.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards                        

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups State Street engages with:

Stakeholder Group
Shareholders
Clients
Employees
Academics
NGOs
Investment analysts
Business partners

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics State Street interviewed five external stakeholders and also engaged employees through a survey, distributed by State Street’s CR team.

What actions were taken by State Street to promote a healthy work-life balance for its employees?

In its 2019 Corporate Responsibility Report State Street reports that it took the following actions for promoting a healthy work-life balance for its employees:

  • Implementing a flexible work programme
  • Flexible work options help State Street’s employees manage the demands of their personal and professional lives. State Street found that offering employees greater flexibility in their work hours and location increases their productivity and engagement, decreases missed days and turnover, fosters trust and loyalty, maximises State Street’s workspaces, improves retention, and makes for a happier and healthier workforce, all of which result in significant savings for the company. State Street’s employees have a choice of five formal flex work options: flex place (remote working), flex time, compressed schedules, reduced schedules or job-sharing.
  • Applying the BeWell Programme
  • State Street’s global BeWell Programme gives its employees the tools and resources they need to manage their physical, emotional and financial wellness. State Street offers several programmes that fall under these three pillars and while the BeWell benefits vary from country to country, they may include online wellness portals, employee assistance programmes, financial planning seminars, tuition assistance, fitness reimbursements, discounts for personal expenses and group discount opportunities. State Street also incentivises employees with the potential to earn additional paid days off for participating in BeWell programming, such as healthy habit challenges.
  • Providing parental and caretaker support
  • State Street seeks to be there for its employees during all of life’s important events, and make sure they have the flexibility, time and ability to care for their loved ones and themselves when it matters most. That’s why State Street provides child, elder and personal care programmes, referrals and resources, as well as emergency back-up daycare for employees. Employees in the United States are eligible for State Street’s extended paid parental leave (up to eight weeks) and paid family caregiver leave (up to four weeks) from the first day of their employment and benefit from additional policies, including paid adoption and surrogacy leave, as well as adoption and fertility assistance. State Street employees across the globe also enjoy parental leave benefits. Employees in the UK may be eligible for up to 52 weeks of both paid maternity leave and paid adoption leave immediately upon hire. Any associated payment, statutory and company, is dependent upon a number of different factors. Employees in India who have worked at least 80 days are eligible for up to 12 weeks of adoption leave and 26 weeks of maternity leave. Employees in Australia who have completed at least six months of continuous service are eligible for up to 52 weeks of parental leave.
  • Offering benefits
  • State Street’s full-time employees are eligible for a range of benefits, including programmes that cover spouses/domestic partners, adult dependents and children; comprehensive medical plan options; dental and vision care; flexible spending accounts for health care, dependent care and transportation needs; employee and family life insurance; Legal Assistance Plan; Employee Assistance Programme (EAP); Salary Savings Programme with 401(k) pre-tax and post-tax; as well as Roth options and a competitive company match. The EAP is a global service to support the mental health and well-being of State Street employees. State Street’s EAP, offered through Optum, is available 24/7. The service is a free and confidential programme for employees and their family members. The EAP can help employees deal with personal challenges that could affect their health, relationships or job effectiveness.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standards addressed in this case are:

1) Disclosure 401-2 Benefits provided to full-time employees that are not provided to temporary or part-time employees

2) Disclosure 401-3 Parental leave

 

Disclosure 401-2 Benefits provided to full-time employees that are not provided to temporary or part-time employees corresponds to:

Disclosure 401-3 Parental leave corresponds to:

 

80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

Research by well-recognised institutions is clearly proving that responsible companies can look to the future with optimism.



FBRH GRI Standards Certified, IEMA & CIM recognised Sustainability Course | Venue: London LSE

By registering for the next 2-day FBRH GRI Standards Certified, IEMA & CIM recognised course you will be taking the first step in gaining the many benefits of sustainability reporting.

Most importantly, you will gain the knowledge to use the GRI Standards, project manage your own first-class sustainability report and:

  • Identify your most important impacts on the Environment, Economy and Society
  • Begin taking solid, focused, all-round sustainability action ASAP

 

References:

1) This case study is based on published information by State Street, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:

http://database.globalreporting.org/

2) https://www.globalreporting.org/standards/gri-standards-download-center/

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