Thursday, July 30, 2015

New Paycheck System - Benefiting Whom?

Two Januaries ago, I had exchanges with the WSM Human Resources Manager about management introducing a new paycheck system which I felt did not benefit workers.

Well. They delayed implementation. Holding a consultation exercise first, since I insisted this was WSM co-op policy. You know. The one I keep on about: including employees in decision-making.

I have no clue what the outcome of that exercise was. But. Here we are some 18 months later, and the scheme is now being implemented for certain. I continue to have concerns, and wrote our HR Manager an e-mail this morning:

"Hey Deborah,

Thank you for the information about the new Aline Card. You will know from previous correspondence that I do not want my paycheck to be direct deposited. I have had problems with banks going weird on me in the past. And I want control over when I place my funds in my bank account. On a wider note, there may well be employees who do not have bank accounts.

Which brings me to the Aline Card. I have no problem with the Aline Card, provided it acts precisely as if it were a plastic paycheck. In other words, I get to deposit when I choose, I can deposit the whole amount into my bank account, and there are no charges or delays whatsoever.

So, two questions, along with a request generally that you can assure me of the above:

1) You say there are no charges. Are you sure my bank will not make a charge? If it does, will WSM cover it in future paychecks?

2) When I deposit my paycheck, I may receive cash immediately, and the remainder of the funds are available the next business day. Is this also the case with the Aline Card? The information seems to suggest I have to wait up to three days.

Many thanks,

There is another point. Which I know from my great and inglorious corporate past, when I acted as a business consultant for a computer software company, specializing in data and check processing for banks.

Funds, wherever they may be, earn interest. If they are in your bank account, they may earn interest for you. If they are in someone else's account, they earn interest for them. When your pay sits on an Aline Card, it is not earning interest for you. They tell us that. Which means, your paycheck is either earning interest for WSM or ADP.

You might want to ask for that interest. Which could be as much as $450 a year.

[In accordance with WSM Employee Policy, it is incumbent upon me to reassure readers that I do not kill lions in the wild, I will not be voting for Donald Trump, and these are my personal views.]