Income streaming provider Wagestream has waived all fees to both NHS employers and staff to allow as many key healthcare workers as possible to get hold of their pay when they really need it.
It means NHS trusts can, from today, release earnings to their staff immediately at no cost.
It usually takes Wagestream three weeks to perform a full integration with an employer’s payroll software but as part of emergency measures the firm can now launch the service for any employer in just 24 hours.
Tens of thousands of doctors and nurses already use Wagestream — current clients include Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust and Royal Surrey NHS Foundation Trust.
As part of Wagestream’s package of special measures, trusts can give workers access to an immediate relief fund specified by them.
Caps usually apply to the percentage of earned pay that staff are allowed to draw down but, during the crisis, any shift tagged as related to Covid-19 on the Wagestream portal will be automatically eligible for fast, same-day payment of 80% of money earned once that shift ends.
This will help prevent labour shortages by helping medical staff and other key workers deal with extra expenses they may face by working additional shifts.
The platform will also facilitate automated daily payment of statutory sick pay where trusts upload the names of those employees who are unwell and self-isolating.
In the last week, Wagestream has seen many employers remove caps on the number of times their staff can use Wagestream in a single month altogether.
Wagestream typically charges firms at least £1.50 per employee per month for the service, and staff a flat fee of £1.75 per withdrawal — but both fees have been slashed to zero to help the NHS navigate the Covid-19 crisis.
Peter Briffett, CEO and co-founder of Wagestream, said: “We’ve all got to do our bit during this crisis, and we find ourselves able to provide NHS workers and employers with a service that is a uniquely invaluable weapon right now.
“Everybody faces unbearable uncertainty at the moment and this misery will be compounded by unexpected expenses. We’re waiving all fees to ensure these vital workers can get at their pay when they need it.
“We’re just not going to focus on our own income at a time like this. Whatever we can do for frontline healthcare workers, we’ll do.”