McDonald’s and VISA’s Collaboration Backfire: See What They Accidentally Reveal About Living on Minimum Wage

bigstock_minimum_wage_word_cloud_7107698McDonald’s and VISA collaborated on the development of a new website aimed at helping McDonald’s employees learn how to budget their expenses. While the gesture may seem nice in theory, when analyzed, it turns out that the budget simply illustrates that living on minimum wage is next to impossible. The demonstration financials provided not only assume income from two full-time jobs -that’s 80 hours a week- but they also fail to account for expenses like heat, transportation, tuition costs and even food! We asked human resource experts at Zintro what this “resource” reveals about working conditions in America.

Dan Belanger is a human resource training expert with project management experience. “Clearly,” he begins, “the McDonald’s team did not fully research the problem and took the path of least resistance. They took the easy way out.” Belanger explains that the companies’ failure to accurately depict and “tackle the tough issue of the true cost of living” leaves room for speculation about corporate assumptions regarding their employees.” “This land of opportunity does, in fact, allow everyone choices,” continues Belanger. “Some choose to manage by a budget others do not. Some choose to be frugal and others do not. How do we know [why] someone struggles? We live in times [that] beg for new methods and thoughts. It’s time to change and focus on quality of life.”

According to Belanger, “The question that begs attention is what information was used to come to this conclusion. One would think, considering McDonald’s substantial workforce, that there would be many varying costs of living. Not all employees would be in the same position of need. Considering a focus on the cost to live versus the cost to consume, a completely different conclusion might be drawn; Yet we continue to use age old formulas and thought processes. The cost of automobile fuel should trigger a thought that perhaps the issue is the rate of pay and not the lack of budgeting knowledge.”

“When considering the cost of living, nothing has really changed from years ago. Sure, things cost more and one would hope that income will keep pace with those costs. But, we continue to be a land of consumers in which the supply and demand theory haunts us.” Belanger believes, “Part of the issue is a matter of balance.” He points out that “we have car loans and cell phones” for which we pay monthly fees, but questions the extent to which these expenses need be considered costs of living; while things like “heat, water, electric, housing, food, and medical” all clearly fall into that category.

“McDonald’s had all the intention of helping, however the results reveal an underlying problem: the vast gap between rate of pay and the cost to live. What we have now, and always have had, is a challenging stance between business and employees. We use age old methods to determine wage ranges [placing] everyone in the same category whether they exceed performance expectations or not. We use Job Descriptions in the place of Performance Expectations to guide employees and management. So to make it easier, businesses often take the path of least resistance rather than focusing on and solving the real problem.”

By Gabriela

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