Improve Staff Financial Wellbeing With Credit Union Partnership

Credit unions across the UK are calling on employers to help staff improve the financial well-being with payroll saving.

ABCUL has launched Work Not Worry to encourage more employers to work with their credit union to offer financial services which cater for the needs of their workforce.

According to research by Never, financial stress costs the UK economy £121bn (and 30 percent of employees are making uninformed financial decisions about saving and spending.

The Chartered Institute of Personnel Development have found that 26 per cent of working age adults in the UK has no savings and 1 in 4 workers have lost sleep over money worries.

For over 30 years, employers have used the services of credit unions in their workplace. These include household brands and institutions such as Admiral Insurance, Royal Mail, British Airways and the NHS.

Research funding by Citi Foundation states that 70per cent of employees who take advantage of credit union partnerships feel more financially capable and better supported and 83 percent of employer partnerships demonstrate corporate social responsibility to staff by providing a material benefit at little or no cost to them.

A majority of employers say working with credit unions improves the financial capability of staff and thus helps create a more productive and better supported workforce. 

This is supported by the Money Advice Service research on employer best practices on financial challenges and their impact in the workplace which states that 59percent of employees with current financial worries say money concerns prevent them from performing their best at work.

A key problem in workers’ lack of financial resilience and reliance upon debt is the chronic lack of savings across the income range. 

However, credit unions’ Save As You Borrow method – which asks people to save a small amount while repaying their loan – has great benefits in creating savings habits. 

Matt Bland, Head of Policy & Communications at ABCUL, said: “In our conversations with employers, it is clear that many are not aware of the financial difficulties facing their staff.  Those that do have sadly seen it became a serious issue in the workplace before they had chance to respond. We regularly hear horror stories of people falling into a downward cycle of repeated and escalating payday loans – robbing Peter to pay Paul. 

 “Credit unions have a proved track record of turning borrowers into savers. Research such as the Save As You Borrow report proves that credit unions are playing a vital role in helping their members become financially responsible. The report shows that credit unions turn 71% of borrowers into savers and that 96% of employees that are encouraged to use payroll deduction through the credit union have found it helpful.

 “All employers have to do once a partnership is set up is spend a couple of minutes making the deductions each pay day – one file transfer, one payment. All employees have to do is agree to a deduction of their choice per month – and it comes directly from their salary, making life easy for everyone”.

The campaign will run for 4 weeks from 9 July – 3 August. For more information about the campaign and to search for a credit union partnership, visit


How to become a Credit Unions of Wales Payroll Partner

Setting up a payroll saving scheme with a credit union couldn’t be easier.

By joining the growing band of more than 140 payroll partners in Wales you will be helping your staff improve their financial wellbeing.

The service is free to employers and designed to avoid onerous administrative demands.

To help staff understand the scheme, credit union representatives can visit your organisation to discuss the savings and loans schemes on offer.

This can either be through a presentation at a management meeting, at a staff meeting or by simply putting up a stand and handing out leaflets at the place of work.

If an employee decides to become a credit union member then all they have to do is produce identification, including proof of address.

In return, they receive a membership number and either agree on the set amount to be withdrawn from their salary and placed into a savings account, or make a loan application.

Credit union members save as little or as much as they want to from their salary. This can be for something specific like a holiday or a new car, or maybe simply because they want savings behind them for an unexpected emergency.

As credit unions are member-owned, savers can receive an annual dividend if there is a profit at year end, once all of the expenses are paid.

Employees can arrange withdrawals over the phone, via email, by visiting the credit union office, or through the online portal at any time.

Staff also have the piece of mind that their employer will only know how much of their salary is transferred to the credit union.

They are not told how this is allocated – either for a saving scheme or to pay off a loan – so confidentiality is key to the success of the scheme.

Payroll saving schemes are a hassle-free method of helping staff to put aside some of their hard-earned money before having chance to miss it!


Thousands in Wales fall victim to loan sharks

BBC Wales report has highlighted that around 4,000 people in Wales have been victims of loan sharks over the last decade.

The figures come from the Wales Illegal Money Lending Unit (WIMLU), which has identified around 300 loan sharks and taken many to court since it was set up in 2008.

The report on Eye on Wales speaks to an investigator from WIMLU who explained how difficult it is for victims to come forward, however hopes that successful prosecutions will persuade people to speak out.

The investigator also cited the heart-breaking case of a Swansea mother who wanted to put her children into social services because her benefits income was being taken by a loan shark.

Speaking in response to the programme, Ann Francis General Manager of Cambrian Credit Union, based in North Wales and Powys, said: “Credit Unions are a good ethical alternative to high cost borrowing.

“It is shocking to hear of the number of people who turn to illegal money lenders when there are credible alternatives. We understand that if you are in a desperate situation you do not always know where to turn.

“If you are in this situation or you need a small loan please contact your local credit union, you will find details at or Alternatively call into your local Citizens Advice Bureau or contact the Wales Illegal Money Lending Unit 24-hour hotline 0300 123 3311. We are here to help.”

Small Changes Can Reap Big Financial Rewards

Spending sprees are fun at the time, but the consequences can last years.

That’s why it’s important to make your money go further and avoid any bad financial habits from spiralling out of control.

There are a number of ways to stop your spending habits leaving you facing a mountain of debt.

When it comes to spending your money, then prioritise what you really need. before buying something.

Sometimes its best to just take a step back for a moment and ask yourself whether this is an item you genuinely need, or simply want. If it’s a want it is most likely a spending whim. 

Why don’t you set yourself a weekly budget, shop around or check price-comparison sites online before taking the plunge?

It’s also a good idea to withdraw a set amount of cash every week and avoid using debit or credit cards. That way you remain in control and monthly statement don’t come as a nasty surprise.

Its always advisable to pay off any existing debts by prioritising which one has the highest interest rate.

Remember that if you consider borrowing again in the future, check the interest rates first and use an online calculator so you have a clear picture of exactly how much you’re paying back. 

You can always have a spring clean – whatever the time of the year! Sometimes a good clear out will uncover plenty of unwanted gifts which could be turned into cash at the nearest car boot sale or online auction site.

Above all, don’t forget the old adage to “pay yourself first” which means that when you get the chance, put something away into a savings account with your local credit union.

 You’ll be surprised how setting aside just £3.00 a day comes to £1,095 in a year!


Workforces Across Wales Benefit From Payroll Saving

Workforces across Wales are benefiting from payroll saving schemes with their local credit union.

Payroll saving is when a employer partners with a credit union to offer their staff saving schemes and affordable loans.

The scheme is as simple as ABC and can be used for saving for a rainy day or paying off a loan.

All employees have to do is agree on a nominal amount of money to be taken from their salary before they have chance to miss or spend it.

Schemes like this are essential at a time when family household debt continues to rise.

For businesses there are added benefits as employees who save regularly. Research shows that it makes them more financially stable, they have lower levels of stress, which makes them more productive and motivated – and less likely to fall absent.

When businesses become a payroll partner they demonstrate their social responsibility and strengthen employee relationships while also benefitting the community at large.

Smaller companies often do not have the budget to give their staff bonuses or large pay rises, but payroll saving is a simple and free staff benefit that can people to create a more financially secure future.

Being irresponsible with finances at a young age can have a detrimental effect on their lives for many years to come. Not only are they faced with paying back high interest payday loans but are also creating bad credit which can be damaging.

The idea of putting aside a portion of income to a savings account before paying bills or enjoying any luxuries, is central to personal financial stability.

Members also receive free life insurance, have a say on how the organisation is run and reap the reward of any profits in the form of an annual dividend.

If you are a director or an employee who feels that your organisation could benefit from joining a payroll savings scheme, please contact your nearest credit union today!


Secure a financial future by saving

The days of children putting half of their birthday or Christmas money into a savings account appears to be a thing of the past.

Today more than a fifth of people living in Britain have no savings whatsoever.

A combination of the financial crisis, easy credit and the rising cost of living has impacted on the very culture of saving.

But it’s never too late to nurture better financial habits to create a more secure future.

Credit Unions across Wales are helping people save their hard earned money, because they believe it is central to personal, financial stability and peace of mind.

Many employers recognise the importance of a savings culture for their staff and are becoming payroll partners. These businesses are showing their commitment to the financial wellbeing of the workforce and encouraging them to save and borrow responsibly, while also benefitting the local community.

If your employer is a payroll partner with a credit union then you can choose to set an agreed amount of money from your salary to be paid directly into your savings account on payday.

Alternatively it can also be used to pay off a credit union loan.

Many credit union members say that the beauty of saving this way is that they don’t miss the money and quickly amass a significant sum. The added benefit is the peace of mind they get knowing that they have a financial cushion behind them ‘just in case’.

Whether it’s saving for a financial goal like a holiday, wedding, Christmas, or creating a ‘rainy day fund’ to give you peace of mind, it really is amazing how quickly your savings can mount up.

If money is tight, consider if there is anywhere that you can make savings, however small.

For instance, by trading a supermarket lunch deal or canteen snack for a homemade sandwich, or a shop-bought cappuccino for a coffee at work and you could easily be on your way to saving £10-15 a month.

That soon adds up to £120-£180 a year, before any dividend payment or interest earned, which will get your ‘rainy-day’ fund, and new savings habit, off to a bright start!


Credit Unions To Receive £844,000 Welsh Government Funding

Credit Unions across Wales will receive over £844,000 of funding over two years from the Welsh Government for projects that support people who are struggling financially.

Projects include:

  • a prison savers scheme run by Bridgend Credit Union
  • a collaborative project led by Bridgend Credit Union to develop a mobile banking app to benefit six credit unions
  • the continuation of a joint schools savings and money skills project by Bridgend Credit Union and Cardiff & Vale Credit Union
  • Celtic Credit Union expanding their community engagement and school savers projects in Swansea and Neath Port Talbot
  • work to promote Cambrian Credit Union services as an alternative to high-cost credit
  • outreach services to be set up by Cambrian Credit Union in rural parts of Powys.

Rebecca Evans, Minister for Housing and Regeneration said: “Credit unions in Wales deliver financial awareness education to adults and children. They help to equip people to make good financial choices, and avoid irresponsible lenders.

“They support people dealing with debt problems, and provide some of the most vulnerable people with sound financial products that they would struggle to access elsewhere.”

Alun Davies, Cabinet Secretary for Local Government said: “We all know the important role credit unions play in helping people who are struggling to manage their money.

“This is particularly useful to prisoners, allowing them to leave custody with savings and a credit union account. This can help former prisoners reintegrate into society, for example, making it easier for them to pay their rent and to receive wages from employment – all important factors in reducing reoffending.”

Call for Wales to become a ‘credit union nation’

Leading politician Jane Hutt is calling on people in Wales to join her in making the country a ‘credit union nation’.  

Speaking after her appointment as Patron of Credit Unions of Wales alongside actor Michael Sheen, Ms Hutt said that credit unions were the ethical choice for all

“The fact that credit unions offer an ethical and affordable way of saving and borrowing for all of us is key,” she said. “But they are also a way we can contribute to the whole community – including those who are experiencing hardship, debt and poverty.

“It is universal; we can all take part, we can all benefit and we can all help underpin this ethical borrowing and saving service for those who need it as an alternative to payday loans.”

She added that she would ‘work tirelessly to support the movement to make Wales a credit union nation’.

Ms Hutt joins existing Credit Unions of Wales Patron, actor Michael Sheen, and the appointment will see the two collaborate to raise awareness and membership of the country’s 18 not-for-profit, community savings and affordable loans providers across Wales.

Leanne Herberg, CEO of Cardiff and Vale Credit Union said: “Jane Hutt has been a long-standing supporter and member of Cardiff and Vale Credit Union and the wider movement across Wales and so we are delighted that she has agreed to take up this patronage.”

The sentiments were echoed by Nicola Field, manager of Bridgend Lifesavers who added: “As the longest serving Labour minister in the UK and an outstanding advocate of social justice, Ms Hutt will be a tremendous asset to Credit Unions of Wales and we look forward to working with her.”

Credit Unions of Wales work to improve the financial wellbeing of those in their communities.

Well-known for offering a more affordable alternative to high interest lenders, Credit Unions of Wales have forged strong links with more than 140 employers across Wales.

Organisations involved in the Payroll Partner scheme work to improve the financial wellbeing of staff by offering the opportunity to save or repay a loan with a credit union directly from their salary.

For further details about Credit Unions of Wales visit

Merthyr businesses boost employees’ financial wellbeing

Businesses throughout Merthyr Tydfil are showing their commitment to the financial wellbeing of their staff by becoming credit union payroll partners.

Many employers are becoming Payroll Partners of Merthyr Tydfil Borough Credit Union and helping their workforce save and borrow responsibly, while also benefitting the local community.

Each new business receives a Payroll Partner Accreditation mark which demonstrates their commitment to giving staff access to savings and affordable credit as a perk of their employment.

Delyth Shearing, Manager of Merthyr Tydfil Borough Credit Union said: “We offer people a great way to save and borrow responsibly and to keep in control of their finances.

“Financial stress was estimated to cost the UK economy 18 million working hours a year and by helping the workforce become more financially responsible and in turn more productive and less likely to fall absent from work.”

The Credit Unions of Wales Payroll Partner scheme sees employers work with their local credit union to offer the ability to save, or repay a loan, direct from their salary.

In turn, as credit unions are essentially not-for-profit community banks, the money saved benefits the local community and economy.

The Patron of Credit Unions of Wales, actor Michael Sheen said: “It’s important that we ensure everyone has access to fair and affordable finance.

“High cost credit providers target those who can least afford it but need it the most. Credit unions offer a fairer alternative and together we can help more people to use their local provider

“Imagine a Wales where all employers offer this to their staff in recognition that caring for employees’ financial wellbeing makes good business sense.”

Legal and General support financial wellbeing of their staff

Legal and General’s offices in Cardiff has received a Payroll Partner Accreditation for supporting the financial wellbeing of their employees.

The Welsh division of the multi-national insurance firm encourages its staff to become members of Cardiff & Vale Credit Union and benefit from a host of easily-accessible financial products.

Corporate Responsibility Manager for Cardiff Lynne Sheehy praised the partnership working between both organisations which began just over a year ago.

She said: “This has been an excellent initiative and works very well for our employees.

“That success is largely due to the frequent onsite visits made by officers from Cardiff & Vale Credit Union who offer financial advice, answer any questions confidentially that our staff may have and promote various savings and loans schemes.

“We regularly communicate with all of our staff in the Cardiff office through monthly newsletters and make them aware of the benefits of joining a credit union.

“Once a new credit union campaign is launched – such as Christmas saving schemes – we inform them right away.

“We are a financial services organisation so we recognise the issues that can affect our employees.

“We want them to be able to manage their finances carefully and make informed decisions on their financial future.

“The Payroll Savings Scheme has a very clear message and has a really tangible benefit to employees if they want to be part of it.”


Welsh employers urged to help staff avoid high cost credit

Credit Unions of Wales are calling on more Welsh employers to sign up to payroll partnerships following a study into the impact of high cost loans.

The report Life on Debt Row studied how different forms of borrowing had affected borrowers from mental health to family relationships and employment.

Nearly half of those using payday lenders said that it had adversely affected their employment situation, while 62 per cent said they drank more alcohol as a result of their debt.

One in 10 respondents said that being in debt resulted in them taking antidepressants for the first time. A third of respondents said that they used more prescription and over the counter medicines as a result of their debt.

The report found: “Credit unions came out very positively, highlighting that they play an important role in offering affordable, fair credit to consumers.”

Ann Francis, General Manager of Cambrian Credit Union said: “Nearly half of those using payday lenders in this report were in employment.

“Employers have a huge role to play in helping people see the real alternatives to high cost borrowing.

“Earlier this month 140 organisations in Wales showed their commitment to staff financial wellbeing by becoming Credit Unions of Wales Payroll Partners and we urge more to follow them.

“This report highlights, once again, that caring for staff financial wellbeing makes social and commercial sense.”

By becoming a Credit Unions of Wales Payroll Partner, an organisation offers staff the ability to save or repay credit direct from their salary. The scheme costs nothing to employers.

‘Life on Debt Row’, by health education charity the Royal Society for Public Health (RSPH), ranked payday loans as having the most negative impact on mental well-being, followed by unauthorised overdrafts, doorstep loans and weekly payment stores.

The research was welcomed by Patron of Credit Unions of Wales and founder of the End High Cost Credit Alliance, actor Michael Sheen.

He said: “The evidence on the impact on our health and wellbeing is now overwhelming. We have the evidence. Now we need action.”

Find your local Credit Union.

Employers: Why offer savings through payroll deduction?

Supporting the financial well-being of staff is good for them, good for the community, but also good for business too.

Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals research states that around a third of the UK population with significant personal debt and financial stress causes the loss of 17.5 million UK working hours each.

By introducing staff to the concept of payroll deduction where a nominal sum is taken from their wage and placed into a savings account before they can miss it, employers are creating a financially confident workforce.

The CIPP suggests that offering saving and borrowing through payroll shows that employers take their staff’s financial wellbeing seriously.

It can be an incentive to draw more employees because it offers real value to the workforce and this not only assists with recruitment but ensures a higher retention of staff.

The scheme also demonstrates how much employers value the wellbeing of their workforce which increases morale and productivity. Research shows that it also reduces absenteeism due to financial stress.

Payroll savings helps staff build up a buffer to cover any unexpected expenses from a broken down car to a leaking roof.

By regularly saving they are also less likely to fall into the trap of turning to payday lenders whose high interest rates can cause individuals into unparalleled levels of debt.

Research by the Financial Conduct Authority found that 4.1 million people in the UK are in serious financial difficulty.

People are seeing their wages been stretched further and further and additional pressure is also applied whilst wages continue to remain stagnant. 

By encouraging staff to sign up to payroll deduction scheme, employers are implementing a secure financial programme for their future.

Payroll savings have also become another essential offering which is provided to employees as part of a portfolio of benefits and deductions.


Cartrefi Cymru Receives Payroll Accreditation Mark

Cartrefi Cymru has received a Payroll Partner Accreditation for supporting the financial wellbeing of their employees throughout Wales.

The not-for-profit organisation which has an office in Trealaw offers a wide range of services, from half an hour of home care to round-the-clock intensive suppor.

Many of their Rhondda employees have joined Dragonsavers Credit Union in Treorchy and benefit from the Payroll Saving Scheme which encourages them to regularly save or pay off an affordable loan from their salary.

Payroll Officer Denise Hall explained that Cartrefi Cymru used to offer their own financial schemes to employees, including a salary advance or a loan based on salaries.

But they signposted their staff to a wider range of financial products to benefit their wellbeing through the local credit union.

Denise Hall said: “We take the financial health of our staff very seriously indeed.

“Our purpose is to protect vulnerable people in the community and equally we want to ensure our own staff feel protected and supported which is why we encourage them to become financially secure.

“This in turn reduces their stress levels and improves absenteeism in the workplace.

“Through regularly dispersing leaflets and holding presentations, our employees recognise how easily accessible the financial products are when they join a credit union and many take advantage of what is on offer.”


Why save through your employer’s payroll savings scheme with a credit union?

Payroll saving is a hassle free method of regularly putting money aside or repaying a loan with a credit union.

Credit unions are a financial co-operative body, owned and controlled by its members.

It seeks to promote thrift by encouraging the habit of saving, offers loans at reasonable rates of interest, and often provides other financial services to its members.

Once you start saving you’re not just a customer, you’re a member and have a say on how its run.

Members can be assured that any money invested benefits the local community – not shareholders – by providing low-cost, affordable loans.

Credit unions usually offer a dividend rate rather than an interest rate.

Just like a bank or building society, Credit Unions are regulated to ensure your money is looked after.

They are governed by the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) so your money is protected up to £85,000.

Payroll savings allows you to save as little or as much as you want by nominating a sum of money to be taken from your wage and placed in a savings account.

Saving money protects you from unexpected financial pressures and helps you manage your money more effectively.

It also means that you are less likely to suffer stress and mental illness due to money troubles.

According to the FCA one in ten employees said they found it hard to concentrate or make decisions at work because of money worries and 19per cent have lost sleep worrying about money, all of which impact productivity.

As the average household debt in the UK continues to rise, with 23 per cent of people either revolving a credit card or using high-cost short-term credit, the need to be more financial responsible is greater than ever.

Whether you need to save for a special occasion or have a buffer available if your car breaks down, regularly saving is a route to becoming financially sound.

Evidence suggests that people across the UK have a strong tendency to ignore the future and live for today.

Around one in three UK household have very little put away for emergencies and would be unable to pay more than a month’s rent or mortgage if they lost their income.

So don’t be another statistic. Start saving today.



Employers: Why choose a credit union for payroll deduction?

There are plenty of reasons why employers should choose a credit union to operate their payroll saving scheme for staff.

The contractual relationship is directly between the credit union and the member of staff therefore there is no risk to the employer regarding loan repayments and saving security.

Helping staff to join a credit union and build their capacity to help staff is a significant demonstration of a company’s corporate social responsibility;

Credit Unions are non-profit financial organisations set up by members with something in common to benefit their community.

They offer ethical, local investments and by introducing staff to their local credit union, employers allow them to benefit from all the services and products available like savings and loans schemes.

Credit unions are committed to improving your community by offering affordable loans from the pot of savings invested by its members.

That means your organisation is positively engaging in the local community at no extra cost to your business.

When staff are encouraged to save money regularly it protects them from unexpected financial pressures and helps manage their money more effectively.

Quite simply payroll savings allows a set sum to be deducted from their wage packet and placed into a savings account.

It can put your workforce on a firmer financial stronghold which in turn makes them more secure, productive members of staff.

Anxieties about money have been associated with ulcers, headaches, back pain and an increased risk of heart conditions.

Citizens Advice found that 74 per cent of people with debt worries found it affected their mental health and led to absenteeism from the work place.

Therefore employees who manage their money are shown to have lower levels of stress.

By offering a cost-free staff benefit with a credit union, employers can enhance the package available to their employees while improving the prospects of staff recruitment and retention.

Staff can improve their standard of living by accessing affordable loans for things they might otherwise be unable to afford like a holiday, which could reduce the stress levels, sick leave levels or staff turnover.


What are the benefits of a workplace loan with your credit union?

A workplace loan scheme allows staff to borrow from a credit union through their employer’s benefits package, which is repaid via salary deductions from their pay packet.

Workplace loans can be a useful tool to help employees develop savings habits because once the loan is repaid, staff get used to a nominal sum being taken from their wage and place it into a savings account instead.

It is important to remember that credit unions offer very competitive rates of interest on personal loans.

Interest is charged on the reducing balance of the loan which is important if you want to repay your loan weekly rather than monthly, because you’ll pay less interest overall.

Credit union loans come with no hidden charges and no penalties for repaying the loan early.

Credit unions also include free life insurance at no extra cost – so if you die before repaying the loan, the balance would be paid off for you.

Typically, workplace loans are used to facilitate debt consolidation and help support staff who may not be able to get a loan elsewhere due to a poor credit rating.

Employers have a corporate responsibility to support the financial wellbeing of their workforce which in turn benefits their own business.

According to the FCA one in ten employees said they found it hard to concentrate or make decisions at work because of money worries and 19per cent have lost sleep worrying about money, all of which impact productivity.

As the average household debt in the UK continues to rise, with 23 per cent of people either revolving a credit card or using high-cost short-term credit, the need to be more financial responsible is greater than ever.

Workplace loans take into consideration an employee’s length of service rather than the usual high street bank method of credit ratings.

The fact that repayments are made via salary deduction on a fixed date provides peace of mind to staff and helps them to plan ahead.

This could be particularly useful for employees who struggle with day-to-day budgeting.

It also encourages staff to improve savings habits and educates them on the importance of ensuring strong financial foothold and not spiral into a lifetime of debt.


North Wales Firm Supports Payroll Saving Scheme

Thorncliffe Building Supplies Ltd take the financial health of their staff seriously by promoting membership with Cambrian Credit Union so they can benefit from a range of savings and loans schemes.

One of the most popular is Payroll Saving which allows a nominal sum of money to be taken from their staff salary and placed directly into a savings account before they have the chance to spend it.

Finance and Personnel Officer Howard Ferdinando said: “We recognise that Credit Unions are a safe institution in which our staff could save their money and also borrow, rather than become a victim to loan sharks.

“Some of our staff struggle financially from time to time and we wanted to support them in any way we could.

“We take their financial wellbeing very seriously as part of our corporate responsibility towards them which is why we partnered with Cambrian Credit Union and there’s been a steady growth of members ever since.”

Cambrian Credit Union staff visit Thorncliffe Building Supplies Ltd’s branches at Dyserth, Ewloe, Abergele and Bodelwyddan to hold advice surgeries with staff and explain the many benefits of their saving schemes and affordable loans.

The company, which supplies a range of services from fencing and concrete manufacturing to building supplies and waste management, have seen a steady growth in the scheme since it was launched three years ago.


Employers In Wales Sign Up To Improve Financial Wellbeing

An impressive 140 businesses across Wales have gained the Credit Unions of Wales Payroll Partner mark for helping staff save and borrow responsibly while also benefitting the local community.

The mark was launched to recognise those employers who are committed to the financial wellbeing of their staff.

Hollywood actor Michael Sheen, the Patron of the Credit Unions of Wales, voiced his support for the initiative in a video message which was played at the launch of the Payroll Partner mark in Cardiff.

“Employers have an opportunity to make a massive difference in the way we work together to improve access to affordable credit,” he said.

“Families in Wales have the smallest average savings in the UK, with an average of £875 of savings per household, this represents only 28 per cent of the UK average.

“Nearly 21 per cent don’t have any savings at all, including large numbers of people who are in employment.”

The mark has the backing of the Welsh Government’s Housing and Regeneration Minister Rebecca Evans who hoped it would ‘inspire’ employers.

“Credit Unions offer people a great way to save and borrow responsibly and to keep in control of their finances,” she said. “There are real benefits for employees and employers in partnering with credit unions, and I hope employers across Wales are inspired to get involved.”

The Credit Unions of Wales Payroll Partner scheme sees employers work with their local credit union to offer the ability to save, or repay a loan, direct from their salary. In turn, as credit unions are essentially not-for-profit community banks, the money saved benefits the local community and economy.


Cambrian Credit Union launches new service in Welshpool

Congratulations to Cambrian Credit Union on opening a new community bank in Welshpool!

Due to the support of Powys County Council, Cambrian will be operating from Welshpool Library two days per week.

In Newtown the credit union will move from its current office to Newtown Library and open three days per week as part of its improved services to the people of Powys.

General Manager of Cambrian Credit Union Ann Francis said the move wouldn’t have been possible without the support of Powys County Council.

She explained: “We are delighted to extend our services and are particularly grateful for the support of Powys County Council for providing premises and Principal Librarian Kay Thomas who has worked hard to help set this up.

“We currently have a number of members in Welshpool and so it’s a huge step forward for us to bring services closer to them and reach out to potential new members.”

Cabinet Member for Libraries at Powys County Council, Councillor Rachel Powell added: “I am delighted that the county council’s library service was able to help the credit union expand their activities into Welshpool.

“Credit unions provide a valuable service for residents and having their operation based in a library makes them more accessible and strengthens the role of the local library.”

From Monday March 5, Cambrian Credit Union will be available between 9:30am and 1:00pm every Monday and Wednesday at Welshpool Library, Brook Street, Welshpool SY21 7PH.

It will also be available between 9:30am and 1:00pm every Tuesday, Thursday and Friday in Newtown Library, Park Lane, Newtown SY16 1EJ.

Staff will be able to deal with enquiries, take loan applications, process cash and BACS payments.

For further details visit



Have You Heard Of Payroll Saving?

Have you ever heard of payroll saving?

Undoubtedly it’s the easiest way to put money aside for a rainy day – and you won’t miss a penny of it.

Through a partnership agreement between your credit union and employer, a nominal sum of money is taken from your salary and placed into a savings account – before you have the chance to spend it.

Payroll saving can be an incredibly effective tool to ensure you have money set aside for a special occasion like a wedding or a holiday or even an unexpected bill like a failed MoT or a broken down washing machine.

There’s never been a greater need to become more financially responsible.

According to recent figures by the Institute for Fiscal Studies, one in four of Britain’s poorest households are falling behind with debt payments or spending more than a quarter of their monthly income on repayments.

The study adds that borrowing on credit cards, loans and car finance deals has returned to levels unseen since before the 2008 financial crisis.

That’s why we want more businesses to remember their corporate responsibility to support the financial welfare of their staff by encouraging them to save with a credit union.

Businesses whose employees save regularly are more financially stable, have lower levels of stress, and are more productive and motivated. They are also less likely to fall absent.

For some small companies who don’t have the budget to give staff bonuses or significant pay rises, the payroll savings scheme is not only simple and free but helps their employees create a financially secure future for themselves.

If young people develop an irresponsible attitude to finances then it can have a detrimental effect on their lives in the long run because not only will they end up paying back high interest payday loans but create bad credit which can be very damaging when making important financial decisions.

The practicalities of putting aside a portion of income before paying the bills or enjoying any luxuries is an important rule in attaining personal financial stability.

By joining their credit union, members will have free life insurance, the rights to have a say in how the organisation is managed and can also enjoy any end-of-year profits with an annual dividend.

Credit unions are not-for-profit financial institutions who their members as individuals and not as a credit score.

If you are a director of a company or an employee who thinks their business should become a payroll savings partner, then contact your local credit union today.