Finance

Vanguard dangles $1,000 cash incentive for staff to get jabbed

Vanguard staff who get vaccinated by October could receive a cash incentive from the company, as businesses ramp up safety around the return to work.

The US-headquartered asset manager is offering $1,000 to all employees who get their jab by the fall, Bloomberg reported. It was unclear whether the incentive could spread to Vanguard’s offices outside the US, spanning its 17,600 employees worldwide.

A spokesperson told the news outlet that an unspecified incentive would be offered to those who “provide Covid-19 vaccination proof”, opting to reward employees “who have taken the time to protect themselves, each other, and our communities by being vaccinated.”

Vanguard was contacted for comment.

The fund manager adopted a hybrid-working model earlier this year, allowing most staff to return to the office for three days per week.

READLegal storm brews over mandatory vaccinations as firms weigh ‘carrots and sticks’

While laws in the US permit firms to have free rein over mandating vaccination, the case in the UK is less clear-cut. Firms in England would not be allowed to discriminate against staff choosing to reject the vaccine on religious grounds, for example, though it is almost a moot point with the country’s vaccination takeup rate at 88.7%.

Though the UK has been steadily opening up since restrictions lifted on 19 July, City workers have continued to brace for further lockdowns amid rising coronavirus cases. More than 60% of UK workers surveyed by Deutsche Bank last month said there will be some form of restrictions still in place by the end of this year.

Vanguard follows in the steps of US investment bank Jefferies which has also pledged to only permit the return of vaccinated staff, telling employees in a letter that the Delta variant could be followed by additional strains of Covid-19.

READJefferies tells staff to get Covid-19 jab before coming back to the office

“The vast preponderance of people at Jefferies are vaccinated, and for that, we are incredibly grateful. Even so, this month we have had 40 new cases of Covid, including two short hospitalisations, almost all cases certain to be the Delta strain,” said chief executive Rich Handler and chairman Brian Friedman in a 30 July memo to Jefferies employees.

Others such as Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan have heavily implied that staff will be encouraged to take up the vaccine, but have stopped short of making it a requirement.

Morgan Stanley told staff in the US that only vaccinated employees would be allowed back into its New York and Westchester County offices. JPMorgan said it would consider doing the same for US-based employees, but has so far only asked staff to reveal their vaccine status.

To contact the author of this story with feedback or news, email Emily Nicolle

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