New Study Shows Even More Can’t Afford Middle Class Basics

New Study Shows Even More Can’t Afford Middle Class Basics

New Study Shows Even More Can’t Afford Middle Class Basics

Financial wellness isn’t something that just a few Americans need to worry about. In fact, more Americans than ever are struggling with everyday financial issues. And these are people who are working, who go to their jobs every day and live above the official poverty line, but yet don’t have enough money to pay ordinary expenses (rent, transportation, childcare and a cellphone). In fact, according to a new study conducted by the United Way, more than 40% Of U.S. households can’t pay the basics of a middle-class lifestyle.

The recently released study: “Working Hard But Struggling to Survive” looked at just this population of Americans. Named the acronym “ALICE” (standing for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed), the United Way report calls out just how prevalent this issue is. As the report states, “ALICE is your child care worker, your parent on Social Security, the cashier at your supermarket, the gas attendant, the salesperson at your big box store, your waitress, a home health aide, an office clerk. ALICE cannot always pay the bills, has little or nothing in savings, and is forced to make tough choices such as deciding between quality child care or paying the rent. One unexpected car repair or medical bill can push these financially strapped families over the edge.”

A variety of interactive maps show just how many across the country are living under the ALICE threshold, click the map below to see more:

At SpringFour, we understand who ALICE is and the millions she represents. In fact, ALICE is very similar to Jane, a fictional representation of a SpringFour beneficiary that has appeared in several of our pitches helping to illustrate the power referrals can have for someone living paycheck to paycheck.

We believe that people should not have to choose between paying their mortgage or paying their child care bill, and we know they need and deserve access to local resources that can help. When people are struggling they often do not know where to turn for this help. SpringFour referrals can help those living paycheck to paycheck find savings by connecting them to local nonprofit and government resources. We know that these types of referrals can help families save in a variety of budget categories. In fact, people receiving SpringFour referrals save on average $250 per month.

Get in touch with us if you would like to learn more about SpringFour can help your organization increase the financial wellness of your customers or employees.


Katie Gottschall Donohue, Vice President, Strategy and Operations

SpringFour, Inc.

SpringFour Is Growing: Introducing Our New COO

SpringFour Is Growing: Introducing Our New COO

SpringFour Is Growing: Introducing Our New COO

I am extremely thrilled to join the SpringFour team as the new Chief Operating Officer. Not often in life do you get a chance to impact the lives of so many. SpringFour is that opportunity. We are laser-focused on getting the best financial health information into the hands of the millions of Americans who need it most.

SpringFour is growing and expanding its reach every day; already surpassing more than one million savings referrals annually. We at SpringFour work tirelessly to deliver creative solutions for our customers. With every new opportunity, we are on a mission to increase financial wellness, to help those living paycheck to paycheck, and to make the world a better place. That is what drives me. That is what drives SpringFour.

I plan to combine my passion and 20+ years of experience leading new company initiatives and driving strategic value to elevate SpringFour to the next level.  I look forward to the years ahead with SpringFour, knowing that our impact will only continue to grow. The future is very bright for SpringFour and the many that we serve.

It will truly be an honor and pleasure to work with SpringFour’s current and future subscribers to help deliver financial wellness to their customers.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any questions or to learn more about SpringFour.

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Helping to Build A Better Future For Oportun Borrowers

Helping to Build A Better Future For Oportun Borrowers

Helping to Build A Better Future For Oportun Borrowers

SpringFour and Oportun began working together in August of 2016 after realizing we shared a mutual goal and mission. Each of our companies believes that those struggling financially should not be left on the sidelines and deserve access to fair credit and direction to local resources that can help.

Oportun was founded in 2005 with the mission of providing affordable loans that help people with little or no credit history establish credit and build a better future. Today, they have helped over one million customers and have originated over $5 billion dollars through more than two million loans.

Those who need access to affordable credit to meet needs frequently require additional financial health resources to get back on track. Nearly 90 percent of Oportun customers live in low-to-moderate income neighborhoods. Many of them struggle to cover basic expenses such as housing, utilities or medical bills. These are just the types of situations where SpringFour referrals can also be extremely helpful and result in the greatest impact.  Oportun partnered with SpringFour to help their borrowers connect with local nonprofit and government agencies that address these types of financial challenges and can help put borrowers on the path to financial wellness.

As Oportun continues to offer SpringFour referrals they see more opportunities to assist their borrowers. As Ezra Garrett, SVP of Public Affairs & Impact at Oportun, recently stated to employees, “With the SpringFour partnership, Oportun helps more of our customers who are facing difficult life decisions find the appropriate assistance they need to get back on track. I feel more confident than ever that we are on the right path in our mission to help more of the 45 million people in the United States with little to no credit history build a better future.”

Initially, Oportun added S4direct to their website, where borrowers can self-serve to find local resources. They also deployed S4desktop in their contact centers, where Oportun agents are able to provide referrals to connect borrowers who have fallen behind on their payments to local resources. Because SpringFour provides its referrals in both English and Spanish, referrals can be easily made and understood by Oportun borrowers, many of whom are more comfortable speaking Spanish.

Oportun has since decided to expand the partnership and offer SpringFour referrals to borrowers through their retail locations as well, where they provide referrals to hundreds of borrowers each month. As Raul Vazquez, CEO of Oportun stated, “Partnering with SpringFour allows us to directly address our customers’ needs in a way that we could not do alone.”

SpringFour is proud to be a part of the path to help Oportun customers achieve financial wellness.


Katie Gottschall Donohue, Vice President, Strategy and Operations

SpringFour, Inc.

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Efma Conference & Fintech/Bank Partnerships

Efma Conference & Fintech/Bank Partnerships

Efma Conference & Fintech/Bank Partnerships

Last week, I had the opportunity to travel to New York City to speak at the Efma Bank+Fintech Conference. Efma, a not-for-profit association formed in 1971 by bankers and insurers, specializes in retail financial marketing and distribution. Today, more than 3,300 financial institutions in 130 countries are Efma members including over 80% of Europe’s largest retail financial institutions.

It was a true privilege to be a featured speaker at their first event held in the United States, which was attended by global leaders in financial services.

As I mentioned at the beginning of my talk in New York, it was an honor to have the opportunity to share with the audience the story of SpringFour and the impact we create together with our bank partners. It’s thrilling to have started a company based on a simple yet powerful idea. That connections matter. And that by creating a technology solution that powers these connections or referrals to local, financial wellness resources, people can get back on track with their payments and improve their financial health. We are making a difference and we believe the ability to share our story on the Efma stage will help bring more resources to those in need.

Rochelle Gorey presenting at Efma Conference

Because the theme of the conference was Bank + Fintech, we were there to talk about our work with BMO Harris Bank. This work came about as a result of the BMO Harris/1871 Fintech Partnership Program last year, which we were selected for and ultimately chosen as one of the top three winners. BMO Harris shared how they vet potential fintech partners, what they consider when deciding to do business with them, and the value they see in SpringFour.

Mike Butler (President & CEO Radius Bank), Tony Nicholas (CEO Alloy), John Schulte (CIO Merchantile Bank), Keith Armstrong (Co Founder & COO Abe.ai), Rochelle Gorey (Co-Founder and CEO SpringFour), Purva Sule (Director, Senior Relationship Manager BMO Financial Group)

At SpringFour, we recognize the importance of working alongside financial institutions to deliver financial health resources to consumers. We could not do what we are doing without our bank partners. And when we say partners, we mean it. I often tell potential clients that we do not view ourselves as vendors. In fact, the first time a potential client referred to us as a vendor I was a bit taken aback. From our first conversation with a potential client, we view them as our partner in delivering financial wellness solutions.

Never have we thought of our relationships with our clients as transactional. And that makes a huge difference in the relationships we create with our bank clients as well as in our ability to create impact. We work with our clients every step of the way to understand the problem that they are trying to solve and maintain an open relationship. In this way, we can craft and create innovative solutions together. Our bank partners know that when they utilize SpringFour’s platform, they are getting everything they need to help increase repayment rates and help their borrowers.

Let me know if you want to learn more about how to become a partner with SpringFour and join us in our pursuit of financial health.


Rochelle Nawrocki Gorey
Co-Founder & CEO

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Best of FinXTech Awards Finalist

Best of FinXTech Awards Finalist

Best of FinXTech Awards Finalist

SpringFour was thrilled to hear that we have been named a Finalist for Bank Director’s FinXTech 2018 Fintech Awards.We are a finalist for the most Innovative Solution of the Year for our work with U.S. Bank. And we couldn’t be prouder.

These types of accolades are so meaningful to us because we know that our solution works, and that we are delivering results. These results impact our customers’ bottom line, but also improves the financial lives of people across the country. U.S. Bank has been an incredible partner, and together we have documented just how powerful these impacts can be.

Through the FinXTech Awards, Bank Director and Promontory Interfinancial Network, LLC  strive to recognize collaborative partnerships between banks and financial technology companies. They understand that these partnerships “present significant opportunities to better serve existing customers, attract new ones, improve efficiencies, bolster security and promote innovations.”

We can’t wait to travel to the FinXTech Annual Summit in May to meet the other fantastic finalists and learn more about collaboration in the financial services industry.


Katie Gottschall Donohue, Vice President, Strategy and Operations

SpringFour, Inc.

Industry Recognition

                 

 

GET IN TOUCH

For all inquiries:
866-732-2246

Chicago Office at 1871
222 Merchandise Mart Plaza Floor 12

STAY UP TO DATE WITH SPRINGFOUR