<strong>Leading Innovators Adopt High-Quality Practices from the Financial Health Network’s Compass Guide to Payroll Cards</strong>
Chicago, IL – January 27, 2015 – The Financial Health Network has released its Compass Guide to Payroll Cards, a tool defining industry-wide best practices and product features for high-quality payroll cards. Today, payroll cards offer many American employees an affordable, safe, and convenient alternative to receiving wages in the form of cash or paper checks, but the quality of products is not consistent across the industry. The Compass Guide to Payroll Cards is based on the Financial Health Network’s Compass Principles—Embrace Inclusion, Build Trust, Promote Success, and Create Opportunity—aspirational guidelines outlining how the industry can design and deliver the basic tools people use to manage their day-to-day finances and improve their financial health. The Financial Health Network also announced commitments made by MasterCard and Visa to implement recommended practices from the Guide.
“A high-quality card can help hard-working Americans plan for the future and take control of their financial health,” said Jennifer Tescher, President & CEO, the Financial Health Network. “We are pleased that MasterCard and Visa are putting our Compass Guide to Payroll Cards into practice, and we look forward to working with them to ensure consumers have access to the high-quality products they need.”
The guidelines outline practices across a broad spectrum of categories including: Choice, Safety, Affordability, Access, Transparency, and Convenience. Examples are included with each guideline to illustrate how companies might apply the guidelines in their work. Developed in consultation with a wide range of advisors from across the industry, the Guide is designed to be used by all actors in the payroll card value chain—program managers, issuing banks, processors, payments networks, and employers.
MasterCard has committed to incorporating the Financial Health Network’s recommendations into the company’s existing Payroll Card Standards to promote Choice, Transparency and Education. Visa has committed to developing an educational course for employers, incorporating recommendations from the Guide to ensure they offer payroll card programs in a high-quality way.
The Compass Guide to Payroll Cards was made possible by generous funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The Compass Principles are supported in part by the Ford Foundation and the Omidyar Network.