Our people

Wellness

We know that supporting the physical, social and financial wellbeing of our employees in their personal life also supports them in their work life—so they can be the best at work and at home.

Physical wellness

Our approach to health is built on the things we can do together with our employees to help manage their physical wellness, achieve their personal health goals, and manage costs. Our focus involves providing opportunities for employees to become more knowledgeable about their wellness, as well as tools and resources to maintain good health. For example:

  • Comprehensive health care: We offer all employees who work 20 hours or more per week—and their families—comprehensive medical, prescription drug, dental and vision benefits. To help protect our employees from consequences of large health care expenses, our medical plans provide 100% coverage for preventive care by an in-network provider and annual limits to the amount an employee will pay for medical care or services.
  • Health screenings: 85 percent of employees, spouses, and partners completed voluntary health screenings and assessments in 2016. As an outcome of these activities, 68 percent of our employees remained in a low-risk health category between 2013 and 2016, and 23% moved to a lower-risk health category.
  • Get Active!: In 2013, we launched a voluntary program to respond directly to employee feedback about not getting enough physical activity. In each team-based, eight-week challenge, participants can earn a reward (or choose to donate their reward to a charity) by taking 56,000 steps per week to improve their overall health. In 2016, more than 93,000 employees at all levels participated in our Get Active! Get Connected challenge—our highest enrollment rate since the program’s inception. Not only did employees form 14,000 teams across the globe, but they collectively walked over 33 billion steps and almost 17 million miles in the spirit of healthy competition and fun.

Emotional wellness

In addition to our focus on physical health and wellness, we offer support to help employees with everyday challenges, special moments, and critical life events.

As an example, we provide our working families with benefits like free confidential counseling and employee assistance resources.

Our dedicated Life Event Services (LES) team — comprised of employees with special training to assist our U.S. employees who need support during major life events. These may include taking a leave of absence, facing a terminal illness, retiring from the company, or undergoing a gender transition while working for Bank of America. LES now also provides transgender transition support to our employees in Hong Kong and Singapore. This enhancement was announced in December 2016, and makes us one of the only employers in these countries to offer this service to employees. Furthering our leadership role in this area, we were the first financial services firm in the UK to offer transgender reassignment surgery benefits to employees. Our LES team also supports employees and retirees when a dependent passes, and their families when our employees and retirees pass. In all cases, Life Event Services specialists ensure they are able to provide timely, holistic support for the physical and emotional wellbeing of their clients.

In 2016, we expanded the team to include specialists trained to help employees directly affected by domestic violence. Employees can get one-on-one support and get connected to relevant resources, including confidential counseling, legal services and safety and security support.

Support for working families

We believe the way we value and support our teammates is a reflection of who we are as a company. This has always been important to us ― it’s the right thing to do and core to being a sustainable, successful company. And our commitment to paying a $15 per hour minimum rate of pay for non-commissioned, hourly employees is fundamental to that work. In addition, for the past six years from 2012 to 2017, we have kept medical premiums flat ― with no increases ― for those who earn less than $50,000 a year.

Some of the other ways that we support teammates and their families include:

  • Back-up child and adult care, adult care services (including up to six hours of in-person assistance with a professional care manager per year at no cost), discounts on certain child care center fees and tuition, reimbursement of up to $240 per month per child under our Child Care Plus program for eligible employees’ child care expenses, and more.
  • Paid and unpaid leave options to enable employees to take time away from work. Parental leave policies differ from country to country. For example, in 2016 we enhanced our U.S. maternity, paternity and adoption leave to provide up to 16 weeks (from 12 weeks) of fully paid time off for eligible employees to care for a new child. An employee can now take up to 26 weeks total of paid and unpaid leave. Parents also have the flexibility to take their leave when it works best for their family within the first 12 months after the child arrives. In 2016, more than 7,000 employees took parental leave. Approximately 97 percent of women and 98 percent of men returned to work after their leave.
  • In December 2016, we announced an enhancement to our parental leave policy for fathers and non-primary caregivers in all of our Asia Pacific locations—making us among the leaders of large employers in the region to offer this benefit. We now provide up to 10 days of paid time off (increased from five days) for fathers and non-primary caregivers to bond with their new child.
  • Maternity workshops and a ‘buddy’ system in the UK for anyone expecting a child, with one-on-one maternity coaching for our senior women. Workshops for managers are also offered to those who have a team member taking leave. Our Parents & Careers Network and availability of 20 days’ emergency childcare/career leave per year are additional benefits that support employees with family commitments. We also offer unpaid parental leave, allowing parents to take additional periods off work in five-10 day blocks. 2016 saw a five-fold year on year increase in the number of new fathers taking Shared Parental Leave.

Financial wellness

We believe that the more informed people are about their money, the clearer their financial outlook can be. This applies not just to our customers, but to our employees, as well.

The business case for financial wellness—integrated with physical and emotional wellness—is clear: If employees are not financially well, there is a greater chance that they may not be physically and emotionally well.

This is why we offer robust financial offerings that focus on driving better behaviors across life priorities and the financial spectrum—budgeting, planning, saving, investing, and more. Our competitive financial benefits help employees address money issues in the here-and-now, prepare for retirement and protect their family in the long term. Benefits include:

  • Our competitive 401(k) benefits help employees increase their savings for retirement through company-matched contributions of up to 5 percent of eligible pay, and an additional 2 to 3 percent automatic company contribution, starting after one year of service. In 2016 we saw a steady growth in the voluntary level of participation in our 401(k) plan, with 96 percent of employees participating in a retirement account. We believe this increase reflects a number of enhancements we introduced in 2016 to encourage employee savings behavior in an effective direction. For example, we introduced 401(k) automatic enrollment for all new hires—where they have the ability to opt out—as well as provided a $50 Welcome contribution from the bank to kick-start their saving. Employees can also take advantage of our automatic annual increase feature, which allows all employees a planned way to gradually increase their contributions to the plan over a period of a few years.
  • Our health care accounts offer employees a beneficial, tax-advantaged resource to manage their health care expenses. Over the past few years, we have increased our communications and education efforts, so employees can better understand the features and purpose of all the health care accounts we offer. For example, in 2016 we created targeted communications about our Health Savings Accounts to help employees participating in those accounts understand HSA saving and investing features as a valuable way to save for future medical care, while paying for current expenses.
  • We also offer a variety of financial education resources to encourage employees to save for a healthier future and that meet a variety of financial objectives. Our Benefits Education and Planning Center provides free personalized guidance for budgeting, debt management, retirement planning and more, while our Employee Banking and Investments group provides access to a full range of discounted banking and investing products and services to help employees pursue their short- and long-term financial goals. Additionally, through our partnership with non-profit online educator Khan Academy, we provide Better Money Habits®, a free education resource available to anyone, anywhere.

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