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Best Employers for Workers Over 50

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2009 AARP Best Employers for Workers Over 50

Central Florida Health Alliance

Winning Years: 2009, 2008
Industry: Hospitals/Health care
Location: Leesburg, Fla.

Highlights of 2009 Winning Strategies

To attract and retain talent, the Central Florida Health Alliance offers employees many flexible-scheduling options. Team members can take advantage of the “Summers Off Program,” which enables employees to work part of the year and have the summer months off. Alternatively, they can work six months and have six months off. These kinds of choices allow retirees the flexibility to maintain a desired work-life balance while continuing to work. As a result, 41 percent of CFHA employees are age 50+.

Recruiting: CFHA uses placement agencies for older job-seekers to target mature workers and retirees.

Workplace Culture and Continued Opportunities: Central Florida Health Alliance offers the following learning and development opportunities to its full- and part-time employees: tuition reimbursement, in-house classroom training, online training, and certification classes. Employees who work at least 20 hours per week are eligible for tuition reimbursement, while all other benefits require only one hour of work per week. CFHA also offers loan-forgiveness programs, scholarship programs, and home-study modules. One hundred percent of employees participated in at least one of the opportunities in 2008, with an average of eight hours of education or training per employee.

CFHA celebrates long-service anniversaries with announcements, parties, awards, and gifts. The Alliance has also used results of employee opinion surveys to implement new policies and fixtures, including the “Sick Child-Care Program” and installing wheels on computerized nursing stations.

CFHA employees develop new skills through temporary assignments in other departments, team projects, and access to a formal job-rotation program. One such program offers team members the opportunity to “trade jobs” with senior leadership, which enables job shadowing. The organization has also worked to accommodate its employees with physical limitations through the use of both worksite and work-area modifications. Modifications have included specialized equipment, such as large-print computer screens, motorized wheelchairs, specially designed phones, and desk and shelving modifications.

Benefits/Health: The Central Florida Health Alliance offers full- and part-time employees working at least 20 hours per week individual and family medical and prescription-drug coverage, employee and family vision and dental insurance, individual and employee long-term-care insurance, and short- and long-term disability coverage. CFHA offers flexible spending accounts (FSAs) to help employees cover out-of-pocket medical expenses. Additionally, the company offers a debit card to pay all medical, dental, vision, and prescription expenses directly, so people don’t have to pay, fill out paperwork, and receive reimbursement later.

Benefits/Financial: CFHA offers full- and part-time employees a 401(k) retirement plan with an employer match. Incentives for participation include the following: All employees, including new hires, are automatically enrolled in the plan, employees may invest in lifecycle funds, and employees over age 50 are able to make “catch-up” contributions. Staff from the retirement plan’s firm and external financial planning experts train employees in financial planning Employees also receive discounts with local financial planners.

The Alliance’s caregiving benefits include paid time off specifically designated for caregiving and short- and long-term unpaid leave. Ninety-six percent of full- and part-time CFHA employees have used the following wellness benefits in the past year: flu shots, health screenings, health-risk appraisals, smoking-cessation programs, discounts to health clubs, physical-activity programs, weight-loss programs, stress-management training, and the use of an on-site swimming pool. The organization also provides a free mini-physical with lab work each year.

CFHA employees can also use the following dependent-care benefits: on-site and backup care for children, grandchildren, and elders, and referral services for day care for children, grandchildren, and elders.

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