Citysave Credit Union
At a time when the financial pressures on families are accentuated more than ever due to the pandemic, the value of payroll savings and loan schemes, to both employees and employers, has never been greater. Sean Lynch, Chief Executive of Citysave Credit Union explains...
The pandemic has shone a light on the financial fragility of some families and highlighted the need for all of us to have fast recourse to either savings or fair-priced finance from a reliable source.
Research from 2019 shows 11.5m million adults in the UK have less than £100 saved. Unexpected life events, without savings or access to a fair loan provider, can make such adults vulnerable to very high-cost payday lenders and even loan sharks. But employers can help employee wellbeing, and keep them away from the sharks, by adding a simple payroll deduction scheme to their employee benefits.
In 2019 the Money and Pensions Service (MaPS) funded research on how workplace payroll savings and loan schemes can help people improve their financial wellbeing. The initial findings from the study suggest that those who save with a Credit Union through payroll are directly benefiting from such schemes:
The research also looked at the financial wellbeing of staff at two employers and revealed the financial struggles facing workforces:
Michael Royce, Senior Policy and Propositions Manager at the Money and Pensions Service said: “An increasing number of employers are recognising the need to address money worries amongst their workforces, with research showing 22% noted that productivity was reduced due to money-related stress.
"We hope these trials bring to light the important role employers have to play in improving the financial wellbeing of their staff and will move them to offer similar payroll saving schemes.”
In Birmingham, there are already several employers that have taken the lead have introduced payroll schemes for their staff with Citysave Credit Union including the council and local NHS Trusts.
Credit unions are an alternative to high street banks and building societies. A credit union is a financial co-operative run by its members for the benefit of its members.
Credit unions provide an easy, hassle free way to save or borrow, and members have the option to have any deductions taken direct from net pay. Member savings do not attract interest but as a co-operative any profit at the end of each year is given back to members in the form of a dividend on savings. Citysave has paid a dividend of 0.25% on instant access savings for each of the last three years.
Who are Citysave?
Citysave Credit Union was initially registered in 1988 to provide easily accessible savings and borrowing facilities to Birmingham municipal workers. Today, Citysave provides savings and loans to over 7,000 members from the wider Midlands community and manages over £9m of local savings. Savings are fully protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.
How can employers get involved to help their staff access this benefit?
Please visit https://www.citysave.org.uk/employee-benefits/ and view a short testimonial video and FAQs. Please get involved and feel free to give me a call!