Toolstation, one of the UK’s fastest growing retailers of tools, accessories and supplies to the trade and homeowners has launched earned wage access (also known as Income Streaming) from Wagestream to boost the financial resilience of staff.
The company’s colleagues will be able to access their earned pay in real time when they face unexpected expenses. Access to the Wagestream platform will also allow them to track their pay and take advantage of Safestream — a micro-savings tool that collects regular, small sums straight from pay packets.
In addition, colleagues will have access to a range of financial education tools provided by Wagestream in conjunction with The Money Advice Service, including webinars that teach staff how to look after their money and an online resource hub that identifies what information and entitlements are relevant to them.
Toolstation has been expanding its employee benefit provision throughout 2020. As well as adopting Wagestream, the company has introduced enhanced maternity and paternity policies, increased annual holiday entitlement and most recently launched the Cycle To Work scheme. Toolstation has also created a wellbeing support hub to help colleagues with their mental, physical and financial needs, and plans to roll out many more benefits before the end of the year.
More than 380,000 UK workers currently have access to Wagestream, with clients including household names like Bupa, Rentokil, Brewdog, Zizzi, Roadchef, Greene King, Fuller’s and Honest Burgers — as well as nine NHS Trusts.
Wagestream’s platform gives staff instant access to a percentage of their earned pay any day of the month. There are no loans involved and therefore no interest is charged.
Earned Wage Access reduces the financial anxiety and stress associated with unexpected expenses, a situation that can be exacerbated by the monthly pay cycle. By giving people access to money they have already earned, they are less likely to need to rely on expensive forms of credit and fall into debt. Wagestream’s own research shows that 77% of their users felt less stressed, 38% had avoided going into their overdraft and 43% said they had avoided using a payday loan.
Cherie Marchant, HR Director at Toolstation, said: “We made a commitment at the beginning of this year to introduce many more benefits to support colleagues.
“The Covid-19 pandemic slowed us down a little but we’re still committed to making life better for our colleagues and Wagestream is just the latest in a string of initiatives we’ve introduced so far in 2020.
“Economic uncertainty breeds financial stress for many people and we’re pleased to have been able to arm our colleagues with Wagestream to help them to meet unexpected expenses when they arise.”
Peter Briffett, CEO and Co-Founder of Wagestream, commented: “It’s fantastic that Toolstation colleagues are getting real-time access to their pay just as the country holds its breath over the true scale and impact of the pandemic.
“Unexpected expenses will be hurting the financial resilience of many working families between now and into next year. We know earned wage access has a positive and measurable impact on financial health. Having it as an option will be an invaluable benefit for many workers.”