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UW Credit Union Celebrates Impact of $15 Foundation Wage


MADISON, WI - Sept. 5, 2018 - UW Credit Union marks the first anniversary our $15 foundation wage, which went into effect August 27, 2017. The increase more than doubled the $7.25 Wisconsin minimum wage as part of UW Credit Union’s continued focus to promote opportunity in the workplace and support the long-term prosperity of the communities it serves.

The implementation of a living wage at UW Credit Union has had a measurable impact on employee recruitment and retention. When the initiative was launched, approximately 25% of UW Credit Union staff received a wage increase. Over the past year, this resulted in a decrease in employee turnover, while applications for employment increased.  In the first half of 2018, the rate of employment applications at UW Credit Union was greater than all of 2017. The number of available positions continues to increase in the Madison and Milwaukee areas to accommodate the needs of UW Credit Union’s growing membership, now more than 250,000 members.

“Our financial strength enables us to attract and retain talent,” says Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer Lee Wiersma. “Not only does a competitive wage foster employee engagement, it attracts highly-qualified employees. This makes our community stronger.”

A living wage positively impacts quality of life for employees by positioning them to better navigate economic hurdles, plan for the future and experience better work-life balance. In turn, wage practices that support families return innumerable benefits to the community, including increased spending in the local economy.

“The foundation wage increase has made a huge change in my life,” says Kayla Yunto, a teller at the New Berlin branch. “Before the raise, I was contemplating getting a second job to make ends meet, because I couldn’t save enough to get ahead on my student loans. Now, not only do I earn enough to pay ahead on my loan, but my fiancé and I were able to purchase our first home together and make improvements right away. I feel like my work is valued here and that makes UW Credit Union an attractive choice.”

UW Credit Union has been recognized as a four-time winner of Madison Magazine’s Best Places to Work and a two-time winner of Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Top Workplaces award, selected by its employees for workplace engagement.

About UW Credit Union
UW Credit Union is a growing, federally insured financial institution and a leading provider of a full range of financial services to University of Wisconsin communities. UW Credit Union's over 600 employees serve the financial needs of more than 250,000 members through world-class technology systems, and through a convenient network of 26 branch locations and over 100 ATMs. With assets totaling $2.7 billion, UW Credit Union is ranked nationally among the leading credit unions. Founded more than 85 years ago by members of the University of Wisconsin community, UW Credit Union continues to operate as a not-for-profit, member-owned financial cooperative with locations in the Madison, Milwaukee, Stevens Point, Green Bay, Oshkosh, Whitewater and La Crosse areas.

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