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Human Library Spotlight: Saving Time and Money with Company-Wide Electronic Payments

Posted in: Truckstop Business, Marketing & Retail

At The NATSO Show, NATSO has tapped into leading industry experts for an interactive, one-on-one learning Human Library full of industry experts with decades of experience.

The experts are on loan to conference attendees for customized learning experiences operators can tailor to their own objectives.

Today we meet Marty Faber with Brightwell Payments. 

// Update, meet all of the Human Library experts at the links below:

Human Library Spotlight: Saving Time and Money with Company-Wide Electronic Payments

For business owners, switching to an electronic payroll system can save time and money by eliminating paper checks.

“There is a lot of mess that goes along with that piece of paper. You have to do the paper stock, you have to do the check run, and then you have to do the reconciliation. Inevitably, there are always lost checks. That paper costs a lot of money—typically $2.50 in time, materials and money for each payroll check,” said Marty Faber with Brightwell Payments. “Although handing out paychecks is a time-honored tradition for many business owners, it is really the least effective way to do it.”

More and more business are switching to direct deposit and placing money right in their employees’ checking accounts, but the challenge with getting to a 100 percent electronic payroll is that not every employee has a bank account. “There is a huge demographic of people in our industry who can’t get or don’t want a bank account,” Faber said.

To meet those employees’ needs while also obtaining a fully electronic payroll disbursement system, operators can turn to payroll cards. During the Human Library at The NATSO Show, operators can sit down with Faber to discuss their payroll options and the benefits. NATSO talked with Faber to learn more about payroll cards.

Q. What is the biggest benefit of payroll cards for both employers and employees?
A. For the employer, it is an opportunity to reduce your cost and your exposure and increase employee loyalty because you’re providing a method to dispense payroll much more conveniently for the business and much more securely for the employee. They also reduce payroll costs, simplify payroll distribution and increase direct deposits.

For employees without a checking account, the card is simply a mechanism used by an employee to access his/her funds that reside in a pooled account at a financial institution.  It works like a debit card, and can be used to obtain cash and make purchases everywhere the network association branded on the card is accepted. The employees’ interest in the pooled account (e.g. the balance of the card) is maintained by the card issuer and/or the program manager so that the funds are eligible for pass-through FDIC insurance. Prepaid cards provide an opportunity for employees to have a secured landing spot for their money without having a credit check or opening an account.

The payroll cards also offer several of the types of services people get from a checking account—such as online bill pay, which can benefit employees. Also, Western Union is becoming a bigger part of our product because of the influx of new Americans coming in. We’ve built a direct interface to Western Union so our users can transfer money off of their card to any Western Union location anywhere across the country. They don’t have to take cash into that location to transfer money. They can do it right from their living room or wherever their computer is.

One national study by NACHA showed that of the three methods to get your payroll—paycheck, direct deposit or a paycard—based on the fees the employees pay, the paycard is the lowest of the fees.

Q. Who is the best candidate for utilizing payroll cards?
A. It really is based on the number of unbanked employees and where those employees are. The reason it fits so well in our industry is you have some companies with multiple locations spread throughout a state or region or even the country. Paychecks, by law, have to be delivered by that designated payday. There is a lot of cost involved in getting those paychecks to the stores. Businesses can eliminate a lot of that cost if you can provide online stub inventory or use a paycard. That way, each pay period it is just an electronic transfer to that card.

For companies with one location, the delivery of the check isn’t as much of a nuisance, but they can benefit from payroll cards by enhancing their employee’s experience. Employees picking up a paper check have to come in on payday to get their check whether they want to or not. Then they still have the associated cost of check-cashing fees. This becomes a cost saving benefit for employees, but more importantly you’re enhancing your employee’s life and making it easier to get their payroll.

Q. How do companies get started with paycards and/or direct deposit?
A. What they typically do is they enter into a direct deposit campaign and hand out the direct deposit forms. The second half of the form says that if you do not have an account, that you will get issued a pay card. When companies are moving to direct deposit, the goal is 100 percent electronic pay. But in our industry, not everyone has a bank account, so the payroll card gets them to that 100 percent.

// During the Human Library, operators can sit down with Faber to discuss their current payroll system and how they can use payroll cards to improve employee loyalty and save time and money. To reserve a time to meet with him in the Human Library, travel plaza operators should contact Kimberly Roberts at kroberts@natso.com or (703) 739-8573.

To facilitate the discussion and find the right solution, operators should bring basic payroll data, such as the number of employees, pay frequency, number of paychecks issued per pay period and turnover rate, so Faber can illustrate their specific cost savings by implementing a prepaid card program. 

The NATSO Show 2015 Human Library is sponsored by: 

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About the Author

Amy Toner

Amy Toner

Toner markets NATSO products, services and meetings. She is the content editor of NATSO's core websites, Stop Watch magazine and Highway Business Matters biweekly articles. In addition, she provides creative services across all departments. Toner joined NATSO in 2006. Prior to joining the association, she served as director of membership services at an association for ambulatory surgery centers. Toner lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and son.

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