“Getting with the times,” so to speak, isn’t always so straightforward. While business owners can optimize everything else about their operation, it’s impossible to control certain things outside of their reach – such as employee preference. While some employers would prefer that all weekly or bi-weekly payments and reimbursements are handled by the human resources department, that’s not always their call to make. This is because some workers simply don’t have a bank account for those direct deposits to go toward. This often by choice, too, so employers calling on workers to set up bank accounts isn’t always going to work. Fortunately, this is where Cliq and Andrew Phillips come in and his company can work as a middleman of sorts.
Mr. Phillips is a payment processing industry veteran and has seen the sector progress of manually-cleared checks to use of card-reading devices he helped develop. With help from Cliq, Andrew Phillips and pre-paid debit cards, employers can put to use a workaround that will keep both them and their workers happy. When payday comes around, the worker’s earnings are deposited onto a pre-paid card instead of being conveyed via a paycheck that the worker will then have to go to a bank and cash. According to Mr. Phillips, “Approximately 30 percent of the working American public are either unbanked or underbanked … With our solution, those unbanked or underbanked employees will be given a payroll card and their payroll will be deposited to the card.”
Cliq’s Andrew Phillips certainly sees this solution as clever, but the convenience it offers to both parties is one of the reasons why he entered the automated clearing house (ACH) payment-processing industry in the first place. During the early 1980s, he would establish Integrated Transaction Services and the company would later go on to develop technology that helped supermarkets read EBT cards. While the technology has advanced in leaps and bounds in the three-plus decades since, the ideology at the center of Mr. Phillips’ venture remains the same. Employers that issue pre-paid cards to their workers give them instant access to funds and can even incorporate the distribution of tips for gratuity workers onto the same platform.
Andrew Phillips saw Cliq process approximately $7.5 billion in transactions in 2017. That’s up from $6.8 billion in 2016 and $5.2 billion the year before that. As a testament to the all-encompassing work that his company does, Mr. Phillips has previously said, “Whether it’s a customer’s credit card or ACH transaction or an employee waiting for payroll, or virtually any other type of electronic payment, processing happens instantly. But it doesn’t happen by itself.”