Features , NOW Money blog

How Mobile Banking For Your Employees Will Transform Your Business

Katharine Budd 7th Nov 2021

Today I am going to reveal how providing your staff with mobile banking will transform your company.

In fact:

Our biggest clients in the UAE reap the benefits of their employees using mobile banking, every day.

But first, let’s look at what mobile banking is and why now’s the time to seriously consider it for your migrant workforce.

What is mobile banking? 

Mobile banking is the use of a smartphone or other network-connected device to carry out banking activities.

Essentially, mobile banking enables an account holder to manage their finances in the same way they would if they visited a physical bank branch, but in a more convenient way.

Common features of mobile-based banking include; a free account with no minimum balance where customers can easily get paid and safely store money, instant access to account balance and transaction history, customer support services and ways of making and managing payments. For example, bill payment, overseas money transfer and cash withdrawal.

But here’s the thing: Even though mobile banking is typically easier to access and use than traditional banking, it was initially met with a great deal of scepticism in the UAE and other Gulf countries.

However, the rollout of mobile banking has been hugely important for low-income workers and employers like you.

Particularly since the COVID-19 pandemic forced a restriction on movement.

Let’s find out more…

Why is mobile banking important in GCC countries?

Let’s start by looking at why access to mobile banking has fast become a necessity in the Gulf.

Migrant workers almost exclusively move to Gulf countries with the aim of making money to support their family back home. Many also save for longer-term goals like paying for higher education or buying a house.

This means migrant workers need a reliable method to send funds overseas every month.

However, most banks in the UAE have a minimum salary requirement of AED 5,000, which excludes around 80% of the population from traditional banking services.

Without access to banking, migrant workers have to rely on brick-and-mortar infrastructure to manage their finances, meaning they must take large sums of cash to bank branches and exchange houses.

The reality is: managing personal finances in cash alone is restrictive, challenging and can come with big consequences.

Firstly, migrant workers who need to send money to family and friends overseas are vulnerable to poor transfer and exchange rates.

This is because these workers typically live near two or three exchange houses and the limited choice gives the branches a monopoly over their finances.

This monopoly results in one thing: migrant workers being overcharged for transfers.

Secondly, migrant workers do not usually have their own transport, so the journey to a physical exchange branch depends on how willing the employer is to drive them there.

Thirdly, if either an exchange house or a sender makes a mistake when processing a transfer – for example sharing the wrong account details or entering account numbers incorrectly – and the money fails to reach the migrant’s family overseas, they may only find out about it when their family tries to collect their money and isn’t able to.

They could have to wait another month for the payment and it’s likely the sender will have to go back to the branch to rectify the issue.

And this takes time, energy and often means being out of work for the day.

Make compliance with WPS easy.

Let’s get one thing straight:

Everyone – no matter what their financial background – should be able to access the financial services they can and want to use.

Mobile banking gives people the freedom to choose and the power to control their own money.

Quite frankly, it is a basic right that many of us take for granted.

But, mobile banking does not just have a positive impact on the lives of migrant and low-income workers.

Mobile banking is important for your company, too.

Let’s find out why…

If your company is licensed onshore or in the UAE or JAFZA Free Zone, you must comply with Wages Protection System (WPS). WPS regulation states that you are not allowed to pay your staff in cash or by cheque, which means you need to have an electronic payment system in place.

If you do not have an electronic payment system set up, or, you think the one you have is not meeting your needs, now’s the time to switch to an all-in-one digital payroll service.

Not only will it give your employees access to mobile accounts making for a simple way to pay your staff, but it will be much easier for you to make WPS compliant payments.

Now, you may be thinking:

“But surely my employees can’t afford a smartphone?”

And it’s a fair question.

But here’s the thing. The UAE has a 98% smartphone penetration rate – one of the highest in the world.

Which means it is likely that most of your staff already have a smartphone. After all, it is the only way they can communicate with their families back home. If you don’t believe us, ask them!

In other words, the foundations to rollout mobile banking across your workforce, are already in place.

So, we’ve covered why mobile banking is important for your employees and your company.

Now let’s take a closer look at how mobile banking will increase the productivity of your workforce and change how your business operates for the better.

FACT: Mobile banking will transform your business. 6 AMAZING ways revealed.

Providing your staff with access to mobile banking will transform your business in so many ways.

Don’t believe me?

Let’s dive into six of the most important…

#1: Mobile banking delivers on the real needs of your staff.

If you want your staff to be more focused at work, you need to provide them with the tools that can make their lives easier.

The things that will genuinely remove stress and distraction.

We already know that unbanked migrant workers need to visit physical branches to complete financial tasks like money transfer, bill pay and mobile top up.

And we’ve also seen that this can be a time consuming and difficult thing to do.

It’s likely that your staff are only able to access these essential services a few times a month.

But here’s the thing: we recently completed a huge analysis which looked at how our account holders use the NOW Money mobile banking app.

And we found out that 75% of account holders log into our app 10 times a month.

That’s more than two times in a week.

Why does this stat matter so much?

Well, let’s look at it this way…

If you pay your employees by a method like a salary card, which means they must visit physical branches to manage their finances, or disappear mid-week to rectify banking errors, it is likely you are contributing to disruption in your workplace.

The solution to this productivity problem is to instead provide access to mobile banking which will enable your staff to log into and manage their personal finances whenever they want to.

They can log in as many times as they need, with no impact on you.

#2: Mobile banking will help increase sales performance.

If your staff have mobile bank accounts, you have the freedom to pay incentives and commissions more frequently than if you are relying on cash or payroll cards.

It is well known that more frequent incentive and commission payments can result in an increase in sales performance.

In fact, when one of our long-standing retail clients decided to pay daily incentives on sales targets instead of a quarterly bonus, it resulted in a 50% increase in sales performance.

Needless to say, our client has integrated this as a permanent strategy using their corporate NOW Money portal and they continue to see month-on-month improvements on sales performance.

Magic.

#3: Mobile banking improves security and lowers stress.

Dealing in cash will always come with risk – not just for you, but for your staff, too.

Here’s why:

Most workers in the UAE live in shared accommodation, often with people they don’t know.

This accommodation does not usually have a safe place to lock up personal possessions and many people worry that their cash (which could be a month or more of wages) will get stolen.

Fortunately, mobile banking offers a safe place to store money and therefore greatly reduces an individual’s concern and stress over money.

Plus, it helps improve the relationship between your workers and reduces friction and tension, particularly if there are accusations of stealing.

#4: Mobile banking reduces unexplained absences.

This sounds simple. But it works.

If you give your staff digital accounts, it means they will have 24/7 access to their finances.

This ability to instantly check the progress of money transfers and transactions means your staff won’t need to down tools and leave work mid-week to rectify mistakes or payment errors at exchange houses.

In fact, our biggest clients regularly report a reduction in unexplained absences.

#5: Mobile banking helps workers reach personal goals.

Let me ask you this…

When you use cash, do you find you lose track of where and when you spent your money?

Yes? I can empathise. It happens to me all the time.

The reality is that your workers feel just the same.

And that’s not just an educated guess.

Many NOW Money customers have reported to us that they hate carrying cash because they find it difficult to track their spend.

Not only is instant access to an accurate ledger super important for those who need to show evidence of their finances.

But it is also a great service for people who are trying to save towards a goal.

And we can all appreciate how happy we feel when we reach our goals.

#6: Mobile banking will help improve employee wellbeing.

It is no secret that workers who spend their downtime doing things they enjoy are more productive when on the job.

The great thing about mobile banking providers is that they often have partnerships with other companies who are looking to promote their products and services.

We already know that mobile banking removes the need for workers to spend hours visiting physical branches and exchange houses.

And that frees up time for workers to spend on meaningful leisure activities, often at discounted rates brought to them by the mobile banking provider.

It’s time to hear from you.

It is harder than ever to find ways to increase the performance of your workforce.

I hope this has given you an idea of how powerful mobile banking can be. Not just for your employees, but for you as a company too.

With that, it is time to hear what you have to say.

Are you already seeing the benefits of mobile banking in your company? Or maybe you have a question on one of these points.

Either way, let me know your thoughts in the comments section below, or, reach out to me at .