Holland & Barrett has launched a new fintech initiative which allows its 5000 staff to access their wages anytime they like, without waiting for payday.
Wagestream has partnered with Holland & Barrett to offer its unique earned salary access scheme (ESAS) to the retailer’s entire workforce.
Using Wagestream’s app, staff can access “a portion of their wages for hours they have already worked but not yet been paid for by their employer”.
Each time a staff member “streams” part of their earned wages into their bank account outside of payday, they are charged a flat rate of £1.75.
According to the fintech company, which is funded by social impact charities, while these payments are not advances or loans Holland & Barrett’s cash flow will not be impacted as it will still pay wages at the end of each month.
“We believe in the importance of making wellness accessible to all, and this includes focusing on the impact of financial stability on our colleagues’ mental health,” Holland & Barrett’s head of pay and benefits Tricia foster said.
“Earned Wage Access is relatively new and hugely exciting for us and all our colleagues. It was easy to implement and gives our colleagues so much more protection from the financial pain of meeting unexpected expenses.”
Staff will also have access to a range of financial tools via Wagestream’s app, including wage tracking, saving tools and tips on how to manage money from The Money Charity and Money Advice Service.
Holland & Barrett is the first major retailer to partner with Wagestream, but key hospitality players including Greene King, Honest Burgers, and Prezzo already use its service.
Wagestream’s founder and chief executive Peter Briffett added: “Earned Wage Access unlocks financial freedoms for all staff. It’s vital we move the workforce away from a situation where they are dependent on payday loans and expensive short-term credit, a reliance that is exacerbated by the monthly pay cycle.”