Retail workers receive financial wellbeing boost with earned wage access

Earned wage is a powerful financial tool at any time, however the global pandemic has shed light on how necessary this benefit truly is for workers in the retail sector.

What is Earned Wage Access?

Earned wage access or earned salary access schemes (ESAS) quite simply allow employees to access their wages as they’re earned.

Earned wage access provides more liquidity to staff, meaning that they can cover unexpected expenses, manage money better and build towards a more secure financial future. 

Running payroll frequently is not really an effective option for many organisations. These solutions provide a way for employees to benefit from increased liquidity without disrupting internal processes or creating more work for the organisation. 

How has it helped retail staff during the pandemic?


Furlough was a term little used in the UK before the pandemic but is now something we’re all very familiar with and will never forget. 

Earned Wage Access technology has clear and powerful applications when it comes to dispersing furloughed income and helping with furlough calculations. 

Wagestream worked closely with clients in the very beginning to help them through the process and release funds to workers furloughed. 

We’ve now helped over 100 business support over 80,000 furloughed staff.

  • 86% of users feel less stressed throughout the outbreak through earned wage access and its benefits 
  • 78% of users have been able to pay an unexpected bill 
  • 46% have avoided using a payday loan 
  • 48% have avoided going into their overdraft
  • 67% say they feel more in control of their finances 

Supporting workers in the sector

“I can only speak from my own experience in these endless months of lockdown, but if it wasn’t for Wagestream I certainly wouldn’t have been as financially secure throughout.” 

David, Wagestream User

“It’s been so helpful at this particularly difficult time with my partner not working . . . it helped us out whilst waiting for his government grant . . . thanks Wagestream.” 

Tania, Wagestream User

“Great system while we’re in lockdown as I can’t contact my bank with the large wait times.” 

Graham, Wagestream User

“Best service especially in hard times. 2020 has been a challenge for us all but being able to access a few pounds here and there has been a lifesaver! Would recommend all companies to use this service.”

Georgina, Wagestream User

Retail and hospitality leaders supporting their staff

Earned Wage Access is relatively new and hugely exciting for us and all our colleagues. We’ve been aware of the benefits it can have for a while, but the recent challenges meant we had to get this live as soon as possible, and Wagestream’s team has supported us in a simple and quick launch.”

Tricia Foster, Head of Pay & Benefits, Holland and Barrett

“We know some have encountered real financial difficulties due to the pandemic. Wagestream will help to alleviate some of this financial stress by helping those affected meet unexpected expenses.” 

Andrew Bush, Chief People Officer, Greene King

“With all pubs closed, these are worrying times for our team members. We had already planned to roll out Wagestream as there are times when our team members need to access their pay – but in light of the additional pressures of being furloughed, we decided to go ahead and get the roll out complete.”

Dawn Browne, People & Talent Director, Fuller, Smith & Turner

“By launching Wagestream now, it means our employees can access their furlough pay before we receive it from the government which will ensure we are continuing to support them during these tough times.”

Kate Moscardini, Head of People Experience, Honest Burgers 

If you would like more information on improving financial wellbeing for retail workers, get in touch.